Internet banking account holders have been put on guard after an elderly woman had her life savings emptied after being sent a brand new card reader.
The elderly woman, who saw savings for her granddaughters stolen, was sent a card reader she did not ask for supposedly from the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Accompanying the device was an official looking letter featuring an RBS letterhead.
She decided she didn’t need it – but cunning thieves managed to obtain her phone number, according to the Manchester Evening News.
They called her up about activating an internet banking account.
She told them she didn’t want it, and was offered to cancel it. To begin the process, the man on the phone told her to insert her bank card into the card reader.
Then, she was asked to give her full card details over the telephone – which RBS is warning customers to NEVER do.
One day later, the elderly woman went to her bank and found out all of her money had been stolen.
Patricia Barry, from Greater Manchester, who knows the elderly woman posted about the scam on Facebook.
Her Facebook post has since gone viral, being shared more than 70,000 times.
She wrote: “URGENT!! Can I just make my friends and family aware of something I have dealt with today?
“One of my ladies received this digital card reader in the post 2 weeks ago from The Royal Bank of Scotland with the enclosed letter.
“She left it to one side as being elderly she wasn’t interested in it. 2 days ago she had a phone call from the bank asking if she received it she said she had but was taking it back to bank as she didn’t want it, the “very nice man” told her she didn’t have to do that he can cancel it for her and told her to put her card and number in to do this.
“The next day she went to the bank for a statement and yes you can guess so every penny had been took out of her account including savings for her granddaughters!”
Thankfully, the elderly woman who was tricked by the heartless thieves has managed to get all of her money back.
Ms Barry added: “She was devastated and the worst of it is SHE felt foolish and ashamed !!! I reassured her these scammers are very good at it.
“Luckily she got her money back but apparently this is a new digital system coming out now so please make your contacts aware of this as it looks very genuine.”
An RBS spokeswoman responded to the Facebook post, and said the bank would never call and ask a customer for card reader codes.
The rep for the bank said if this happens customers should end the call immediately.
The RBS spokeswoman said: “The Royal Bank of Scotland uses a digital banking card reader to authorise transactions leaving your account via your digital banking. If you get a phone call saying it’s your bank, the police, or another company you trust and they ask for card reader codes, end the call immediately.
“Your bank will never ask for third party reader codes over the phone and you should not disclose these to any third party under any circumstances.
“If you receive a card reader in the post that you’ve not requested, report it to us immediately.”