Barclays, the high-street bank, has advised its customers to be “extra vigilant” following reports of a new type of e-mail fraud.
Falsely purporting to be from a committee associated with the London Olympics in 2012, e-mails have been sent to many recipients, stating that they have won a lottery prize.
It then asks them to make a payment online which will “release” the winnings – but this is instead stolen by the fraudsters using the credit card details supplied by the account holder.
The attacks, which Barclays claim have been targeted at “thousands of recipients”, are similar to phishing, where customers are sent a fraudulent e-mail which asks them to confirm security details such as their credit card number or account passwords.
Of the new attacks, Barnaby Davis, electronic banking director at Barclays, remarked: “Fraudsters are becoming increasingly sophisticated and many scam e-mails can look very convincing with the use of familiar branding.”
He added: “The bottom line for customers is that if they have even the slightest doubt about an e-mail, to ignore and delete it.”
According to WetStone Tech, the term “phishing” was coined as internet frauds use “e-mail bait to fish for passwords” from “the sea of internet users”.
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