Twitter user @jon16923 flagged an email he had received with NatWest last week to double-check if it was a real email from the bank or a scam. @jon16923 said: “Hello, I just received this email claiming to be from yourselves. “Am I right in thinking it’s another scam or is it some kind of error from yourselves? Many thanks.”
In his tweet, @jon16923 attached a screenshot of the email which they had received with the email titled: “Your mobile contact details has been updated.”
The email read: “Dear Customer,
“Request to change your mobile number has been received.
“Your new number 07*******65. If you did not make this change, cancel the request immediately.
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“A one time passcode will be sent to your previous mobile to authenticate the request.
“Click here to cancel mobile update request.
“We are here to assist you anytime, Your account security is our priority. Thank you for choosing Natwest. Sincerely, “
Natwest confirmed @jon16923 was right and the email he had received was indeed a scam.
The email may appear to come from an official company through its design and wording and it often asks someone to click a link, open an attachment, or reply with their account or personal information.
If a link is clicked, the victim is usually taken to a fake log-in page which imitates the official company the scammers are posing as and people are asked to enter their login details.
This is a “data-harvesting scam” where criminals collect account information they would likely use for another scam on an individual later down the line.
The most common practice of these types of scams, is the scammer will call pretending to be from a bank and will try to convince someone to move money over to the scammer as their account has been “compromised”.
Scammers will then use the information they received from the fake text scam to try and reassure the victim they are in fact the bank.
They will provide things such as account numbers, account emails, and maybe password characters in order to do this.
On its website, NatWest highlights how people can protect themselves from falling victim to a scam email such as this one.
It said: “Our emails will always contain one piece of personally identifiable, like a partial postcode or name so that you can identify it as genuine.”
NatWest tells people they should contact their bank directly through a known email or phone number if they receive a message such as this.
It also warns people to not download any software to their computer or install any applications or software to their phone or devices following an unsolicited email.
NatWest urges its customers to always report scams when they receive them as it helps both Natwest and Government agencies to track scam patterns.
People can forward suspicious text messages to 7726 which is a free scam text reporting service provided by phone operators.
People can also report suspicious emails that appear to be from Natwest to firstname.lastname@example.org or to the Government’s official fraud team at email@example.com.