Reports from people receiving calls from possible scammers claiming to be from a Sky contact center still continue on despite the recent conviction for conspiracy of 14 people who used the same trick, as sentenced by the Swansea Crown Court.
The latest report came from the victim who was advised to wait for a replacement viewing card to be inserted in her Sky box. The next scam caller told her that she was also entitled for a refund for the overcharging of Sky. After the victim gave her bank details to the caller, she then discovered that large sums of money had been withdrawn from her account.
The number 01332387203 was reported in tellows as a scam similar to this method:
Despite leaving Sky and starting a new account at our new home, they keep calling trying to get us to sign up again
…while user Walter was also called by this number 01275390573:
Called asking for me by name in connection to my Sky TV. They reckon the service plan had expired.
Told them I didnt have sky, never had either – found similar numbers online with similar reviews so thought I would add this one to the list.
Other accounts from target victims start from a call requesting for a feedback on the service of Sky. This is just to confirm if they are really a customer or subscriber. If yes, then they get a follow-up call from the billing or sales department of Sky offering upgrades or cover plans.
The group of fraudsters who was sentenced by the Swansea court for 21 years in prison sold victims Sky insurance policies amounting from £69.99 to £99.99. These scammers used phone books covering all of Wales, and some parts of England to target their customers. The whole sales pitch sounded real and credible so they were able to get the credit or debit card numbers of the victims.
Those who did fall for the offer found that money was taken without their knowledge before the 12 month renewal date came around. In some instances three, four or five extra payments were taken within the year. Some customers had money taken twice on the same day by different members of staff.
Normally, if your Sky equipment is already out of warranty, you can get an insurance plan so that you can get it repaired or replaced if damaged. The service is actually provided by a 3rd party not by SKY themselves. And this opens doors for scammers.
The call would sound valid since fraudsters would know your:
- the first 4 digits of your debit card
- that you are a sky customer
- that you had a protection plan
- that you had recently renewed it
- that you had not made any claims since renewing it
However, you should know that: when someone confirms your card details to you, they should give you the last 4 digits and not the first 4 digits. The first 4 digits are not unique but are in fact the same for all the other customers of the bank.
What to do if you think you got scammed
1. call SKY to confirm the call
2. call your bank and cancel your card
3. dial 1471 to get the number of the scammer if it’s withhelf and report it to the police
Protect yourself from this scam
Never give out your personal details on the phone to someone who has called you, always call the company back on a known number.
According to Sky, the viewing card does not exist and is just a way to engage the customer, and that if someone does have an issue with their viewing card, an onscreen message will advise them to call Sky rather than the other way round. If there’s no message, calls from “Sky staff” should be ignored.
Hang up and call Sky on 08442 414141.