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O2 customers, warns Which?, are being targeted by fraudsters offering mobile phone discounts





O2 customers are being targeted by scammers offering fake discounts in order to get access to their mobile phone account.

Consumer group Which? says it is receiving growing numbers of reports from mobile phone users on the O2 network who are being contacted out of the blue with an offer of a discount on their bill.

Which? says there are growing reports about a scam offering bill payers a discount. Image: iStock.
Which? says there are growing reports about a scam offering bill payers a discount. Image: iStock.

However those who accept the fake promotion risk giving scammers access to their account and the opportunity to buy additional contracts in their name

How the scam works

The scam initially begins with a phone call, describes Which?, in which someone pretending to be from O2 will attempt to run through a series of security questions.

While on the phone the customer will then get a text from O2 – a genuine message – explaining that a one-time passcode has been requested. This has been triggered by the scammer trying to log into the victim’s account on the official website while maintaining conversation.

Mobile phone users are targeted with an offer of a discount or deal. Image: iStock.
Mobile phone users are targeted with an offer of a discount or deal. Image: iStock.

While the text message from O2 includes a warning stating ‘if someone’s calling you and asking for a code, please end the call because they do not work for O2’ that might arouse suspicions, Which? says the scammers are very prepared to argue their request is genuine.

Next will come a follow-up text containing the actual code, which if then read back to the fraudster who is still on the line, will allow them into the customer’s phone account where they can change passwords and take out further contracts the victim will be paying for.

The fraudsters generate a passcode in order to gain access to an account. Image: iStock.
The fraudsters generate a passcode in order to gain access to an account. Image: iStock.

The warning from Which? adds: “The scammer wants to access the account and change your password - potentially enabling them to attempt to take out contracts in your name.”

O2 has described the scam as a ‘vishing’ attack – a type of cyber scam that uses voice and telephone technology in order to trick someone into sharing their data.

Customers are being warned to treat unexpected calls with caution, especially those offering a discount, and the advice is to put the phone down and call the company on a trusted number to verify any details you’ve been given or asked for.



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