Gardai have issued another warning to the public over a complex phishing scam where fraudsters pretend to be from Bank of Ireland to try and swindle people.
The rise in scams and frauds in recent times has caused a number of warnings with the latest relating to one of Ireland’s main banks.
Members of the public have been hoodwinked by links online, or in text messages claiming to be from officials in either the HSE, the Department of Social Protection or a bank.
But Gardaí are repeating their warnings as a number of people are still being caught out.
A Garda spokesperson said: “People are still clicking on links in texts and emails and as a result they are being defrauded and losing their money. This is a text that was received by a person who does not even have a Bank of Ireland Account.
“BOI : We have temporarily restricted access on your BOI account due to suspicious activity, to re-authenticate visit (bogus link)
“BY SIMPLY CLICKING ON THE LINK CONTAINED IN THE MESSAGE YOU ARE RUNNING THE RISK OF BEING VICTIMISED WARNING: Never Ever click on a link in an unsolicited email or text.”
Gardai have said that there has been a “continual increase” of cases involving elaborate phishing scams that have proven to be popular among thieves.
In terms of what the scams involves, criminals are making bogus phone calls and sending scam text messages to individuals whereby they’re pretending to be a member of An Garda Síochána, the Department of Social Protection, Bank of Ireland or the HSE.
The increased popularity and prevalence of this scam has prompted the Department of Social Welfare to issue a warning which said: “Customers and members of the public are reminded about scam phone calls and scam text messages they may receive from individuals purporting to be an official of the Department.
“These calls and texts display a range of numbers. Any person who receives such a call or text is asked to report it to the Gardaí immediately.”
One person said: “Warning* I received a recorded phone call from Revenue ( #scam ) saying I owe money and legal action will be taken unless I press 1 to arrange payment etc” and provided the image below.
Given the popularity and believability of this fraud, Detective Superintendent Michael Cryan has provided more advice on what to do.
“The advice is always the same – to be wary of such calls, especially if initially it’s an automated voice. Do not engage, do not return the call, hang up on them and never share personal information. Never give away your PPS number, your banking details or any personal pins and data like that.”