Scam watch: beware fake Amazon emails
Email fraudsters are trying to steal money from the bank accounts of unsuspecting consumers by pretending to be from online shopping site Amazon.
Action Fraud has issued a warning to consumers after receiving several reports of scam emails, purporting to be from Amazon - one victim says they lost £750 to this scam.
The convincing emails say they are from the online retailer and even look as if they have been sent from “firstname.lastname@example.org” - a legitimate email address.
Messages say that a user has placed an order with Amazon and asks them to click a link if they don’t want to authorise the transaction.
Victims have been told that orders for vintage chandeliers, stereo systems, and luxury watches have been made in their name.
When the user clicks through to cancel the order they are asked to enter their name, address, and card information. This is then used by fraudsters to steal money from their bank account.
If this happens, immediately contact the bank or building society where you hold the account. In the case above where £750 was fraudulently taken, the victim contacted Nationwide, which refunded the customer in full.
Charity Citizens Advice says consumers can claim back money that has been fraudulently taken from their bank account under the Payment Services regulations. However, victims must contact their bank as soon as the fraudulent payment is noticed.
Look for tell-tale scam signs
While these emails are realistic, Amazon says there are often some tell-tale signs to watch out for:
- Emails contain links to websites that look like Amazon.co.uk, but aren't Amazon.co.uk
- Users are prompted to install software on their computer
- Messages contain typos or grammatical errors.
Amazon says it will never ask for personal information to be supplied through email. If you receive a suspicious email, Action Fraud can be contacted on 0300 123 2040.
This is a mutual organisation owned by its members and not by shareholders. These societies offer a range of financial services but have historically concentrated on taking deposits from savers and lending the money to borrowers as mortgages, hence the name. In the mid-1990s many societies “demutualised” and became banks. One academic study (Heffernan, 2003) found demutualised societies’ pricing on deposits and mortgages was more favourable to shareholders than to customers, with the remaining mutual building societies offering consistently better rates. In 1900, there were 2,286 building societies in the UK; in 2011, there are just 51.