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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.

Amazon Prime scam: what to expect

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

I avoid using Amazon wherever possible. There are various reasons, but continuing electrical safety issues have have discussed in other Convos. One benefit is that I am not going to be a prime target for this scam.

George’s suggestion about warning friends and family is a good one. The more we can raise awareness of scams the better.

That is a coincidence, as we got a scam email today.
—–Original Message—–
From: orders @amazon.co.uk [mailto:info@ soulmates hypnotherapy.com]
Sent: 16 October 2019 17:04
To: (email removed)
Subject: Your Amazon.co.uk order confirmation #227-4883157-16556672

Greetings (part of email name)

This email confirms your order of the following plan:

Name of plan: Prime Platinum Membership
Date of order: 16 October 2019
Period of plan: 1 Year
Price (inc.VAT): 71.79 GBP

The plan period will automatically renew unless you turn it off no later than 24 hours. To cancel your plans, go to your account.

Cancel/Refund Plan

We hope to see you again soon.
Αmαzon.co.uk

I don’t use Amazon but on my “open ” browser they know my near address .
Amazon is set to “rule ” a good part of the world they are into a great many things and that will include banking in the future .
Many cities now blame them for helping to shut city centre businesses but I am afraid they are so big now and all powerful as most websites use them at least for their servers that they are practically “untouchable “.
As Alfa post shows always check the URL it will always contain the appropriate organisation but the extra parts give the show away .
Check this website to test your URL and shortened version of it and read the help given –
https://www.lifewire.com/how-to-test-a-suspicious-link-without-clicking-it-2487171
also the short URL tester –
https://checkshorturl.com/

I think somebody is standing over my PC watching me I have just received an email from America from a very good app organisation for Windows users that I would like to install but cant ( Glasswire ) .
In the email the first heading is —scam emails ! –
Windows Sandbox-
It is good to be cautious about clicking on unknown links or running programs obtained from untrusted sources. But we may encounter links and programs that may be truly useful which we can’t verify as safe. Sometimes we just cross our fingers and hope we are protected by one of our layers of security such as antivirus, being up-to-date on security patches, running as user rather than administrator, or a firewall.
If other defenses fail, a sandbox might help to protect your computer. A sandbox isolates processes so they don’t affect other parts of your computer. If you run something from within a sandbox, you can observe its behaviour. If it appears to be doing bad things, you can close down the sandbox and your regular desktop is unaffected.
Sandboxes can be application-based, which isolate a single program. Or they can be a virtual machine or VM. A VM gives you a complete copy of your operating system running in an isolated environment.
Chris Taylor -Community Review Board of a security company -President of the Ottawa PC users group and Windows Insider MVP .
Shows you this subject is getting worldwide news.

Kevin says:
16 October 2019

This could simply be called ” Well known product/system/application” “scam warning”

Don’t trust a phone call, don’t trust an email, don’t trust a website, don’t trust a bank to know and implement secure online systems, don’t trust someone knocking on your door to sell double glazing.

And sorry wavechange, I’ve seen “raising awareness of scams”, in action, it can be as bad as actual scams since most folk are bamboozled by legitimate technology and are happy to spread hoax nonsense.

Educate yourself on the technology you use, simple, common sense measures protect you from most scams.

Unless you expect a call from your bank, it’s not your bank. If you’re worried, call them back on a separate phone using a number you already know – it’s on the back of your card, make a note of it now.

Unique passwords for anything important – get a decent password manager, use 2 factor authentication, preferably NOT SMS based. Don’t worry about changing a password unless you think it’s compromised. Longer passwords are better than random ‘complex’ ones – can you type it into your keypad easily without cycling thro keypads?

Decide whether you want convenience or security on your phone. If it’s convenience, don’t use it for banking.

Patch your computer (or phone/tablet) and any applications, use good AV, don’t install trivial applications or games on something you use for critical work, or click on unsolicited links.

And if you have Alexa, Siri, Cortana or Google whatever, don’t worry, the corporations already own you and will keep you in a domesticated izombie state until you are no longer economically useful at which point even scammers will abandon you.

Thanks Kevin – lots of useful advice there 🙂

Christine Barrow says:
17 October 2019

I’ve had two of these phone calls this week saying money was about to be taken for an Amazon Prime subscription. I didn’t bother to listen to the rest of the call and hung up. I did check my Amazon account though as I’d recently had a Prime trial but of course no payment was due. That’s when I knew for sure it was a scam.

Kevin says:
17 October 2019

Quite a useful little eye-opener here, it’s only a few minutes long:

https://www.bbc.com/ideas/videos/the-art-of-privacy-in-the-digital-age/p07qntb4

Some of the ideas are a bit extreme, but it’s a useful heads-up to social media’s role in scams.

Tony B says:
18 October 2019

I’m getting 2 or 3 of the ‘£39.99 Amazon Prime Scam’ calls each week. It’s now 18 October 2019.

Noel Adams says:
18 October 2019

If you use a ‘Truecall’ call minder (Which? Best Buy) the automated scam call will simply not get through. We’ve not had a single nuisance call in over two years!

Derbyshire Rambler says:
18 October 2019

I also received an email from “Amazon Prime manager”. Fortunately, I did not accede to their request as I knew my annual Prime membership had months to run.
I reported this to Amazon and also removed details of my credit card from my Amazon account and enter it
now each time I buy a product.

Monica slocombe says:
18 October 2019

I got a scam phone call about this two days ago on my landline. I use amazon but never use Prime, so I disconnected the call. I then realised that I never give my landline to online companies, so this is definitely just a phishing exercise.

I had a spate of these about 2 weeks ago, all saying my Prime account would be debited by the much higher sum of £99.99. Obvious scams so hung up. All had come from different numbers according to my CLID – which turned out to be non-existent because I got the standard ‘failure’ message if I rang one back. Nuisance calls remain a problem (I might get 4 or more in one day, then nothing for a week). It’s all very well compelling cold callers not to hide their CLID – but the law should go further – and prevent them from falsifying it. The telecom companies should also be required to block calls from non-existent number automatically.

Brenda Lambourne says:
18 October 2019

Yes, that’s exactly what I had. Initially I got a lot of silent calls from apparently legit UK numbers which turned out to be non-existent if I tried to call back. Then after a while they morphed into the £99 Amazon Prime scam message. At least one a day, sometimes more.

Jacqui Kinsey says:
18 October 2019

I received one of these phone messages yesterday stating my amazon prime account was increasing to £39.99. The gentleman was very convincing that Amazon had recognised this was not a genuine payment and were going to refund the 39.99. He went on to state I needed to update security on my computer and that he could help me. It was only at the point where he convinced me to download software to enable him to access my computer remotely that I took fright and hung up. Fortunately I never gave him this ability. I hope I avoided being scammed at the last moment. Have now set up two factor authentication on my amazon account. What scares me is that I do not consider myself as someone easily taken in but having used my prime account a lot that day made it all seem more genuine. It was good timing on the scammers part. Was this a coincidence or not?

Fiona says:
18 October 2019

I received one of these calls a few weeks ago. I am an AmazonPrime member, but as I don’t actually know what my landline number is so knew for sure I’d never given it to Amazon, I knew it wasn’t genuine! If only these ‘do not call’ registers actually worked!

Yep received exactly this scam call two days ago – was wary of it so didn’t press 1 to speak to the account manager instead logged onto amazon as usual to check and as I thought my prime membership doesnt run out until next July so clearly a scam.

Malcolm Dove says:
18 October 2019

If I receive a call from a number I don’t recognise but am curious as to who it may be, I answer the call but say nothing. Invariably, within a second or so, there is a click on the line and that’s it. If I hear a lot of background chat I just hang up. If it’s a genuine call they will leave a message.

Robert Smith says:
18 October 2019

Pleased Which has picked this up. I had two of these calls yesterday. I hung up at once, suspecting a scam. I added the first call to “blocked numbers” but received another one later from a slightly different number which I’ve also blocked. Is there no way these criminals can be traced and prosecuted? I lot of people my age (72) are not as savvy about computer and phone security as I am.

Blocking the numbers is pointless because they use a different number every time – all of them fake.

Helen says:
18 October 2019

Yes just received after reading your warning about half an hour before!

Linda says:
18 October 2019

I got the same email about Platinum Prime membership. I was suspicious because I knew I had renewed my Prime membership in July. I deleted it but I wonder how many people will think it is genuine, especially if it arrives at the time of renewal.

Neil Clifton says:
18 October 2019

The scammers are also targeting Virgin Media customers. I received an email stating that my payment details were out of date and unless corrected my service would be discontinued in 10 days time. I checked online, (but not using the email link given to me!), and confirmed all payment details were up to date. The email was deleted unactioned.