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Scam call warning: Amazon Prime ‘renewal’

An automated scam call is impersonating Amazon Prime, telling victims their subscription will be ‘renewed’ for £39.99. Here’s what you need to watch out for.

We’ve been made aware of an automated scam phone call designed to trick Amazon Prime customers into connecting with a fraudulent ‘account manager’.

It’s similar in tactics to the ‘Visa fraud department‘ call, which also instructs victims to ‘press 1’ to be connected.

From here, it’s highly likely scammers will attempt to extort bank details and/or personal data from you.

Update: 19/11/2020

More than a year since we first published this warning, and despite our efforts so far to see action taken, we know that the Amazon Prime scam call is still happening.

We’re also aware that the call is continuing in the run up to Black Friday (27 November), therefore we’re renewing our call on Which? Conversation to be wary as scammers look to take advantage.

Which? recently published further evidence of similar remote access scams that have the potential to wipe out a victim’s life savings, including Amazon Prime impersonators who stole £6,900 from a woman in her 60s.

We’re now calling on the government to introduce legislation to ensure a new statutory code of practice can be created, which would include clear standards and protections for victims.

Update: 18/03/2020

Thank you to the 17,000+ people who filled out our survey on this dangerous Amazon Prime scam call – the data we’ve collected will be vital in taking action against it.

What’s next? We’ll now be taking your responses to the phone companies and Amazon itself to demonstrate just how widespread this scam call is, and how it’s impacting on people’s lives.

We’ll then work with them to implement appropriate action, including warnings, potential call-blocking and reporting these calls to the relevant authorities.

This page will be updated as soon as we have more information. Thank you for your support.

Update: 13/02/2020

This Amazon Prime scam call has been frequently posing a threat to the public for too long. We want to see action taken against it from the phone providers and Amazon.

You can help us stamp this out by answering the following questions:

The Which? Amazon Prime scam call survey is now closed

We’ll then use your responses to prove just how widespread this problem is and which providers are the most affected.

Amazon Prime scam: what to expect (16/10/2019)

To find out exactly what you need to watch out for, I spoke with Craig, a member of the public who received the call on his landline earlier this month.

He was told by an automated voice that this was a ‘reminder’, and that his Prime account was being renewed at a cost of £39.99.

It went on to tell him that he should ‘press 1’ to speak with an ‘account manager’.

Craig is indeed an Amazon Prime customer, however he’s never associated his home number with his Prime account. This would suggest that the scam is targeting members of the public at random, rather than Prime customers directly.

How to deal with phone scams

If you’ve received this call, hang up immediately. Amazon will never contact you in this way, and the call being completely unsolicited should also set off alarm bells.

You can read our full guide to phone scams here, and also report this scam to Action Fraud using its online reporting tool.

If you do think you may have given sensitive information to scammers, contact your bank straight away and let them know what’s happened.

You can also find out everything you need to know about getting your money back after a scam in our guide.

I made Amazon aware of this scam call after speaking with Craig. An Amazon spokesperson told me:

“We take phishing and spoofing attempts on our customers seriously, and will never call a customer for payment outside of our website. If a customer has concerns or receives a call they believe is not from Amazon, they can check the Amazon.co.uk help pages for guidance”

Have you received this Amazon Prime scam call? If so, did you think it was genuine?

Whether you’re an Amazon Prime customer or not, do help us get the word out by warning friends and family about these calls, and let us know if you’ve received anything similar in the comments below.


Comments

801.221.1384 this was the last one that I just received.
There’s other numbers but they all start with 801 area code

Suzannah says:
26 November 2020

Just got this call which i knew was odd because I pay monthly for my Amazon prime at student rate. Knew it couldn’t be Amazon because it was a local number. 0115 945 2182

Marie Anne Masterman says:
26 November 2020

I have had two phone calls recently requesting that I renew my Amazon Prime membership at a cost of £79.99. They were from an odd number which didn’t seem like a UK number.

Pamela McKeown says:
27 November 2020

I had the same call this morning press 1 etc. Was going to cancely Amazon Prime as a precaution. Now I know it’s a scam for sure, I can keep the account over the Christmas period
Thanks for sharing this.information.

JOHN BRADFORD says:
27 November 2020

Just had a call from 01509558258 automated recording saying My Amazon Prime account has just been renewed and I think it said £79-99 has been taken out of my bank account. It’s funny as I don’t have a Prime account

Julia Peill says:
27 November 2020

I have had three phone calls today, all different numbers, saying that an iPhone has been ordered on my card, from amazon and press one to confirm or two to cancel. Checked my card, no transaction, assuming that this is yet another type of amazon related scam.

Mick Barker says:
28 November 2020

Had the excact same phone call as you.

Just got the call today. American accented “bot” telling me renewal for 39.99. Press “1” to continue.

I just hung up.

Scam the scammers….Press 1 and engage the guy up to point when he asks you to turn on computer… Explain batteries are down and can he stay on line whilst you search for charger… Keep him on line by asking him to stay connected as you will soon have computer up and running… Managed 20 minutes plus up to date, with plaintive cries of ..’Hello, Are you here’ ? coming from ‘phone… Have a nice day.

Asha Alex says:
30 November 2020

wish I had seen this earlier. I love such engagements. I usually act very surprised and pleased with calls about “accidents” I had and tell them, honestly it was not my fault. Then talk about how great technology is that they can reach me so quick to help as I have just returned after some one bashed into my car because of which I was so shaken and bumped into a divider on the road and as I got out as I was even more jittery did not see cyclist behind me and knocked him over as I reversed, only minor injuries there.. all very traumatic, but please can you help me pin everything on the first person and what is your number so I can give the police and anybody else…

Anna Korula says:
29 November 2020

Was scammed I believe on 28/11 by someone with inside information about my Amazon account which had been behaving rather oddly (items I had not placed in the basket, landing on a Chinese page etc.) so I had written to Amazon via its customer service and also used the Chatbot so when I received a call and connected to: careprimeamazon365.wixsite.com I believed it was genuine, I was then connected to anydesk.com and teamviewer.com all of which my Norton security cleared so fell for the scam, and was asked to type in details into a form which was to feed remotely into the Amazon system I grew suspicious at this stage but was told I could take a coffee break and to leave the laptop untouched (all done by a very calm and informed sounding professional with an Asian accent and British names (3 persons in all) and that they would call back so I guess my computer has been infiltrated as well and my identity stolen as there was no call back. I also received an email subsequently on my phone, supposedly from Amazon (with an invalid London tel number and WesternUnion where an account had been opened in my name, and requesting that I click on links, which I did not click on. I was initially called from CH and then London tel nos. +415225093378 and 02081442028.
I still do not know the extent of the theft and damage caused to me, as my identity has also been stolen from my laptop; I did contact my bank by telephone but wonder if the telephone is also being tapped via the keys. Very traumatic altogether and will report further.

DerekP says:
29 November 2020

Anna, sorry to hear this but thanks for the detailed report. Any desk and TeamViewer do have legitimate uses for remote IT support. Hence they won’t be flagged as malware. (But last time I used one of them, it did pop up warnings about scams. Once scammers are connected, they can do pretty much anything to a PC and its user’s private data. So you should get your PC looked at by a competent person. I’ve not seen any instances of these scammers being able to tap phones, except where they are provided by PC software.

john cooper says:
30 November 2020

Anna the simplest safest thing is to do immediately restore your computer/laptop back to an earlier date before the scam occurred and everything that the scammers might have downloaded to your laptop will be eradicated. None of your personal files or images etc will be effected .

Just select START then type in SYSTEM RESTORE then select system restore at the top of the list. Then select NEXT then select a date prior to the scam date …If the date shown doesn’t go back far enough then click on ‘show more restore dates’ and select one from that list.
You can do this yourself and its the best way to restore your computer back to a time before there were any issues this includes downloaded programs and internet and WiFi issues ….John

Heather Watson says:
29 November 2020

I received a call at 07.30 yesterday morning on my ex-directory landline which woke me up. After (sleepily) listening to the recorded message asking if I wanted to cancel the renewal of Amazon Prime, I pressed 2 to speak to a ‘person’. An Asian woman answered so I said that I didn’t need to cancel Amazon Prime as I didn’t have Amazon Prime. She kept asking if I wanted to cancel it, as, if so, she would send me a form. I kept repeating that I didn’t need to cancel something that didn’t exist. I asked her what name she had for the account and she couldn’t tell me … just said that someone from my phone number had the account. I said that that was impossible. I also asked where she was ringing from, the number showing on my display being 07053852578. After much hesitation, she replied ‘London’. She started to get annoyed at all my questions and kept repeating that if I wanted to cancel, to let her know. I eventually hung up. What concerned me though was that, after the call, for some reason, I picked up my handset to see if she was still connected. I heard dialling tone but this immediately changed to the sound which indicated that a number was being dialled. As I had not pressed ‘redial’ I was very concerned and hung up immediately. I don’t understand these things but it would appear that somehow the scammer had maintained a connection to my line … for what dastardly purpose?

Mrs Solley says:
29 November 2020

Had a phone call on November24th to say £79 99 had been taken out of my bank A/C and I am not an Amazon Prime customer. I was instructed to press 1, I did but no-one answered. The recorded message was given by a woman with a mainland European accent not a British accent.

Asha Alex says:
30 November 2020

I got a call about amazon prime renewal this morning. As I had signed up for trial only last night, I actually responded by pressing 1 and as I heard the person at the other end, I realised it had to be a scam, as the monthly renewal is far less than the £17.99 quoted.

David says:
30 November 2020

I got a cal at 7.35 AM on Friday 27 Nov (black friday) and another one today at 7.20 AM (number used was 07050 856153) about my prime renewal – i dont have prime and amazon have never (legitimately) had a phone number for me. Amazon have no interest in stopping this scam and instead refer people to the police action fraud website.

Received call with same scam today. 0015097787252. Caller very persistent. Dealt with. These people need to be stopped!

Sharon says:
30 November 2020

number 02089537657 called and asked for £79.99 or they would cancel my Amazon Prime, I said they had the wrong number and had no idea what that was. The texts and voicemails were obviously not working so they phoned in person…surely these spam companies spend more than they get back.