I was called on my landline a few days ago by someone who said he worked for Virgin Media. He said there were indications that my broadband router was faulty and that I should download Teamviewer software to give more detailed information. I foolishly convinced myself that the call was genuine and did the download. This was a big mistake! NEVER NEVER NEVER load anything onto your computer from a call on your landline. The fraudster made several attempts to steal money from my bank account which fortunately were blocked by the bank. I spent an hour later speaking to a fraud specialist at the bank who said the computer must not be switched on again until is has been professionally cleaned. My local computer repair shop said he had five other similar cases in the queue ahead of me.
I get the router hacked calls regularly, if Virgin do ring it will be from a known telephone number which can be recognised, and is usually only in response to enquiries you have made earlier.
I make a note of the genuine number, but even that can be spoofed by the hackers using voip generated calls.
It is difficult to know if a call is genuine or not, I once got a cold call form virgin to upgrade my tivo to a v6 box and it was genuine, so difficult to judge sometimes.
If any cold calls are received treat them with caution and do not give access to your computer or give out any data.
Put the phone down and ensure the call is disconnected properly and they are not keeping the line open and they may pretend to be Virgin, BT etc.
The call can always be checked by later contacting virgin or the community for advice.
I once got caught out with an amazon scam but realised it was a scam after I switched on my computer as requested, they are very professional and often sound genuine but it is a scam. The wording is usually such that they convince you that you need to proceed for your own security to avoid being compromised, so easy to fall for these scams until you realise they may be just a clever scam to get control of computers and bank accounts.
I set up my phones so they recognise my contacts and display the name, any unknown numbers I treat with caution.
My recent scams are routers, amazon, appliance insurance, get at least one each week.
They will try to download rat software or remote working so they can take over computers from a distance.
fraud-how to identify if a virgin communication is genuine?
This is not always easy as I do not know what telephone numbers are genuine virgin or which email sender address is genuine-
for example recent fake emails I received in the last week -possible phishing emails -
"Virgin Media" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Also I note from a recent "fraud" post the phone caller number did not register as a virgin phone number on "who called me" website
As virgin uses call centres in different countries the phone number can change, sometimes 0800 number or can be 0345 number.
It would be beneficial if a list of genuine contacts for phone and email for virgin was available, to combat fraud- (is a list available?)
e.g. The usual contact phone number(s) and also contact emails that virgin would use for communication.
This would hep to identify if the phone number or email sender address is genuine.
If unsure it is wise to double check and the phone numbers or emails claiming to be virgin before giving out any data.
Also be aware both phone numbers and email addresses can be spoofed to look genuine, so be cautious and do a check first, it could be someone pretending to work for virgin media, do not press any phone numbers if asked, by a pre-recorded message, usually they will say press 2 or 9 etc. as these are scams.
It looks like the scammer had access to most of the files on my iMac which of course includes the keychains for quick access to services requiring a login. I don't know whether it is possible to decode information in MacOS keychains but it is likely that there are encrypted.
However my iMac has been thoroughly cleaned and appears to be working normally although all my keychains have been cleared which is a little tiresome..
I am now being much more careful answering calls on my landline and never speak to strangers!
I am fortunate that my bank and credit card provider are extremely fraud alert and blocked several attempts to steal my money.
It is very hard to find the official contact details on the virgin website, but found this useful web page-
Not sure why these numbers do not appear on the account webpages under contact information, perhaps it is easier to ring 150 for help if you have a landline as it is free, or use the community for advice. There is a151 number for technical help, I assume that still works.
One number is not listed which is a virgin telemarketing 0800 phone number ending -411 (has a neutral rating so seems ok)
The official numbers are 150 or the 0345 number ending 1111, however looking at the who called me it has a "negative" rating so can be spoofed.
Another virgin media service number is listed in a post as 07533 ending 809, not sure if this is valid.
The email communications for bills and password changes confirmation etc all come from virignmedia.com email address from the "webteam", so not sure if that is the only one, but my recent fake unpaid bill emails were not from this email address and actually went to the wrong email, not my contact email address.
It would be useful to know the official virgin media email addresses for support etc, or is the "webteam" the correct email.
It would be useful to know the virgin text message format (sender), although I do not have a virgin phone, virgin seem to know my mobile numbers, as on occasion they do contact me by mobile but rare but recently changed my preferences so could get texts and also if a fault is reported I get a text message when the fault is cleared to my mobile number. As text can also be spoofed and have links, check the text is from virgin media-does it display the sender number? (textphone)
Note-I have not published and full telephone numbers or email as only virgin can do that but the web link by virgin shows the usual methods of contact for phone and text, and the chatline has not worked for ages, so the community is always useful but email contact addresses are missing.
scam phone calls - how to deal with them and avoid fraud-
There is a useful guide from age concern regarding cold calls. (see link below)
In most cases the scammers use unknown phone numbers, if you have a display phone check if you recognise the number.
Any phone number can be spoofed so even a known phone number could be a scammer, which is a concern but most of my scam phone calls are unknown phone numbers which means you need to check who the caller is, I use the "who called me" website, but a lot of the scam phone numbers are unknown and voip generated so change every time. Best not to agree to anything and never download anything onto a computer, put the phone down and do your own checks. Yow will be safe provided you give the caller no data, or just hang up.
If the call is genuine then the caller would not ask for your data on a cold call or ask you to log into your computer.
My cold calls have reduced lately but I always answer just in case the call is genuine and an answer phone is useful, the scammers rarely leave any messages on my answerphone, they ring off before it is activated and they are probably robocalls or cold calls with no one on the other end sometimes.