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Phone scams (Vishing)

  • What are phone scams?


    Phone scams (also known as Vishing) are fake calls made by scammers that claim to be from your bank, your building society or organisations like telecom providers and HMRC. They may use your full name, use a number you recognise or mention personal details that convince you that you are speaking to a genuine caller. 

    Fake callers sometimes claim that you have been the victim of fraud and urge you to divulge confidential info, like your PIN or passwords to prove your identity. They may then use these details to access your bank account or demand that you make an immediate payment to their accounts to resolve a problem.

    Phone scams (also known as Vishing) are fake calls made by scammers that claim to be from your bank, your building society or organisations like telecom providers and HMRC. They may use your full name, use a number you recognise or mention personal details that convince you that you are speaking to a genuine caller. 

    Fake callers sometimes claim that you have been the victim of fraud and urge you to divulge confidential info, like your PIN or passwords to prove your identity. They may then use these details to access your bank account or demand that you make an immediate payment to their accounts to resolve a problem.

Almost a quarter of people in the UK (23%) have received a vishing call*

  • How to spot the signs


    • the caller is insistent and demanding – urging you to act now
    • you are asked to transfer money to a new account
    • someone asks for your PIN or banking password as proof of your identity
    • they claim that you are the victim of a fraud
    • they ask you to withdraw money or make threats.
    • the caller is insistent and demanding – urging you to act now
    • you are asked to transfer money to a new account
    • someone asks for your PIN or banking password as proof of your identity
    • they claim that you are the victim of a fraud
    • they ask you to withdraw money or make threats.
  • How to stay safe


    • remember that your bank will never ask for your PIN or password over the phone
    • your bank will never ask you to move money to a safe account
    • if in doubt, hang up and call your bank back on the number on the back of your card to confirm
    • scammers can fake a dial tone, and even listen in when you make your next call so, wait at least 10 seconds after hanging up, before phoning back, or use another phone or call a friend first to check the line is clear
    • don’t trust caller ID – scammers can mimic the numbers you know.
    • remember that your bank will never ask for your PIN or password over the phone
    • your bank will never ask you to move money to a safe account
    • if in doubt, hang up and call your bank back on the number on the back of your card to confirm
    • scammers can fake a dial tone, and even listen in when you make your next call so, wait at least 10 seconds after hanging up, before phoning back, or use another phone or call a friend first to check the line is clear
    • don’t trust caller ID – scammers can mimic the numbers you know.

Worried that you've been targeted?

If you think you've been the victim of any scam, it's important to call us as soon as possible.

Call 03 456 100 100 (Lines are open 24/7, 365 days a year).