Pensioner ‘devastated’ after losing £7,000 in ‘very convincing’ child in need fraud | Personal Finance | Finance
On The Money to the Masses podcast, presenter Andy Leeks explained how this happens, and how others can protect themselves from being victimised. He said: “The child in need scam happens when fraudsters trick money out of parents by posing as one of their children.
“It’s quite a clever scam in the sense that obviously mum and dad are called mum and dad on lots of people’s phones.
“So, these scammers can fire off as thousands of messages to numbers that they have harvested, with a fairly simple message.
“It’s not particularly sophisticated, it simply says something like, ‘Hey mum or hey dad, I’ve lost my phone. This is my new number can you text me back?’”.
Fraudsters do this in an attempt to start a conversation, gain trust and eventually ask the parents for a money transfer.
The scam usually takes places on WhatsApp, and it can be “very convincing and very easy” to fall victim to if someone has a child that is often losing their phone, using their friend’s phone to contact them, or has just gone on holiday.
To prevent this type of scam, Mr Leeks suggested using voice notes to confirm the identity of people’s children when the number is not a recognised one.
He added: “Or ask them a question like, ‘What’s your middle name?’ Or date of birth, just something as an extra layer of security.
“At the end of the day just make sure the person who is at the other…