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Banking and card fraud

Bank account fraud has taken place if transactions you haven’t made show up on your bank statement. It often happens as a result of identity theft, when cards or bank account information have been stolen from you.

To help protect yourself against banking fraud:

  • Shred letters or documents containing your personal details before throwing them away.
  • Never give out your pin code or online banking passwords – even to a caller claiming to be from the police or your bank. A genuine bank or organisation will never contact you out of the blue to ask for your PIN, full password or to move money to another account.
  • If you do receive an unsolicited call requesting your personal information, ask the caller for a switchboard number, which you can use to call them back.
  • Don’t click on any links or open any attachments from an unsolicited email. Doing so could allow fraudsters to access to your information or infect your device with a virus.
  • Don't send or receive private information when your device is connected to public Wi-Fi – unless you’re using a secure web page.
  • Check a cash machine every time you use one. Always cover the keypad when entering your PIN and don’t make it obvious which buttons you’re pressing.
  • Some cash machines are built entirely by fraudsters. Be cautious using a ‘standalone’ machine, rather than a ‘hole in the wall’, which is embedded in the front of a building such as a bank.


What do I do if I notice a payment on my bank statement that I did not pay for?

Contact your bank immediately. They will conduct an internal investigation if your card or account has been used fraudulently. They will usually refund you the money direct to your account and advise whether you need to have a new card issued.  

I didn’t ask for a credit card but one as arrived for my account, what should I do?

Ask your bank to cancel the card. This will alert them to the fact that your identity may have been stolen. Cut up the card to ensure that it cannot be used by anyone else.

Who should I contact if I think I know who has used my account or stolen my identity?

You can report  this to Action Fraud  via their website or by calling 0300 123 2040. Alternatively you can report it to police online, in person, on 101 or 999 in an emergency.

A cash machine looks like it’s been tampered with, what do I do?

Do not use the machine.  If it’s attached to a bank or shop tell the staff immediately or alternatively contact us.

The little book of big scams

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