By Nick Morrison
Telephone fraud is unfortunately very much alive and well. We even had an attempt on us earlier this week. The attempt was expertly dealt with by my good lady (we were once fraud victims a couple of decades ago, once bitten——).
We have a phone which displays the incoming number and she spotted that the incoming call was from abroad. We are not in the telephone book and haven’t been for decades. Some fraudsters use sequential number calling, ie they start at 622000, then 622001 and keep going recording if they get a response or not.So a phone which displays the incoming callers number is a good first line of defense.
Be doubly cautious with all calls that are “Number withheld” However it is not infallible according to Margaret Keenan, a Royal bank of Scotland Manager. Some fraudsters have developed a technique of fooling incoming call display phones. As Margaret said, firstly no bank would ask you for any kind of account or personal details unless you had phoned them first. So be on your guard if an incoming caller starts asking for them. She also described the very useful 2 phone technique as a means of combating fraud.
If the incoming call is on a land line use a mobile to call your bank to check if the call is genuine and vice versa. The fraudsters are well aware that many folk will want to check if the call is genuine and will keep their end of the call open , so if you think you are calling the bank you are merely talking with them again. They will change their voice if not working with an accomplice. If you only have the one phone, call a family member or friend whose voice you know well.
If it is not that family member or friend which answers – bingo you have just caught out a fraudster.
What next . Report it! We did and the Spanish Police actually caught our fraudster.
This article was to have been part of a report (to be published shortly) of a Management talk to the farming community recently. Margaret thought it was too important to be buried in Farming report as it deserved a wider audience.