With thousands of unsuspecting people falling victim to scams in the UK every year more and more scammers seem to be getting away with it.
“Almost three quarters of us has been targeted by scammers in the past two years and one in 10 know someone who’s lost money to fraud”, according to Citizens Advice.
Many scams originate from criminal call centres abroad, where teams set in motion their scams to defraud, regularly operating 24/7.
Often people are targeted by these call centres telling them there is a problem with their computer which can be fixed for a fee. Or they’re tricked into downloading malware by clicking on ads or suspect emails which then infect their computer with a virus.
Sometimes, scammers manage to trick the person into handing over money either over the phone or through a pop-up or made via money transfers. In severe cases callers steal financial and personal details. Other computer scams involve offering bogus virus protection or warranties.
It is very difficult for the police to find and prosecute scammers, so one man in the UK, fed up with the fraudsters, decided to do something about it. He hacked into a call centre in India from where scammers target their victims. He managed to film and record scam phone calls and then passed the information over to the BBC. The footage is shown in the BBC Panorama programme on BBC One at 20:30 on Monday 2nd March.
I had a near miss last week. I received an email offering a tax rebate reportedly sent by HM Revenue & Customs. Luckily, I had recently been in contact with HMRC and knew I wasn’t due anything, so I didn’t click on any links in the email but instead contacted HMRC and reported it. It could so easily have gone the other way.
Have you been caught by a scam? Or have you been shrewd enough to realise someone was trying it on? Do you think the police are doing enough to find these scammers? Will you be watching the Panorama programme? Let us hear your views and perhaps your experiences may help others be aware.