Harrogate police warn of fake Amazon phone call scam
Residents in North Yorkshire are being warned of fraudulent phone calls purporting to be from Amazon.
Different methods have been used and several cases have been reported across North Yorkshire in recent weeks.
Residents have reported being contacted on the phone to inform them that their Amazon Prime accounts have been renewed. Some of these calls have been made using a recorded “robovoice” whereas some have been made by a human. The victims have been told to press 1 if they didn’t request their account to be renewed and they will receive a refund.
There have been other incidents where a fraudster purporting to be Amazon has called a resident on their landline, claiming that there has been fraudulent activity on their account and requesting that they log in to their Amazon account via a website or a different app which they are required to download to their phone.
In both instances of these calls, the scam works by the fraudster obtaining personal and financial details of the victim.
PCSO Nathan Stuart, a Fraud Ambassador for North Yorkshire Police, said: “If you receive a phonecall claiming to be from Amazon, offering you a refund or asking you to log on to your account, do not proceed with this. Hang up the call.
“You are not obliged to speak to them. Do not share any information with the caller.”
Amazon have issued an alert on their UK page: “Unexpected Call, E-mail or Text Message from Amazon? If you receive a suspicious phone call, email or text message claiming to be from Amazon, asking for payment, personal information or offering a refund you do not expect, please do not share any personal information, and disconnect any phone call immediately.
"You can report spam calls via Action Fraud at https://www.actionfraud.police.uk. Please also note that Amazon will never ask for your personal information, or ask you to make a payment outside of our website (e.g. via bank transfer, emailing credit card details, etc.).
"If you received an e-mail regarding an order or Prime membership, or anything that you don't recognise, please forward the e-mail to [email protected] and then delete it. Do not click on any links in such emails.”
This type of call is known as phishing. This is where the fraudsters are asking you to provide as much of your personal information as they can get out of you, to not only take advantage of you in this instance, but also to sell your details on to others for other attempts. The less information you give them, the harder it is for them to take advantage.
PCSO Stuart added: “A call-blocking device such as Truecall fitted to your landline will reduce the number of phishing calls you may receive. This includes other phishing calls such as a caller purporting to be from the HMRC stating that you have a debt to pay. Most of these calls use VOIP, which is Voice Over Internet Protocol, basically like an internet phone line. Call blockers like Truecall prevent these calls from reaching you.”
Truecall is promoted by the National Trading Standards Scams Team.
Further fraud awareness advice can be found at www.facebook.com/North-Yorkshire-Police-Fraud-Awareness-501398623600896.