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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: 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:

Create your own user feedback survey

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

The biggest Amazon scheme is their guided “tours” around their specially cleaned up warehouses, with tourists carefully prevented from talking to anyone about the real conditions in their hellhole sweatshops, where employees are fined for going to the toilet and anyone suspected of union membership is “performance managed” out of their job; the words “Potemkin Village” and “Theresienstadt” come to mind.

Mark Wheeler says:
14 February 2020

The comments above might well have some basis in fact but I don’t see they are relevant to the issue under discussion, namely a phone scam being perpetrated on Amazon Prime customers. I have not experienced any such calls, but I have received two calls this week from people purporting to represent Virgin Media (on both my mobile and fixed line). When I contacted VM Customer Services to complain, their call handler was very keen to get details, e.g. the caller’s number and whether I had provided any account information (I had not; the caller hung up when I pointed out her mispronunciation of my surname). Virgin also asked if I had reported this call to the police, which suggests to me this type of scam may be an issue for them, too? Maybe Which? should ask them.

Kalina Prothero says:
14 February 2020

I agree with you. I voted your comment up but it automatically removed my up vote so now you have -1. I never use Amazon Prime. They should give us Nectar points for shopping with them. Loyal customers are not given anything. If you are on Prime you get some cheap deals but nothing for other customers who may have spent thousands over the years.

Robertson says:
13 February 2020

I get a few Amazon Prime scam calls a week. I also have my elderly mother’s phone calls directed to my house and she gets more. I am with TalkTalk so I am able to block the last caller free of charge. I report them all, the ones I receive and the ones that come to Mum, on TalkTalk’s own reporting service and on Who Called Me UK. It’s pretty obviously a scam because they say “39.99” without saying a currency.

I received it for refund of my money because I have cancelled. I insisted I do not want refund but they said it will stay activated and you will be charged, as I had paid via,credit card I would not know till my next month’s statement so they convinced me to generate an I D number via Amazon Help Desk

I look after the phone system for a large organisation in Ireland with over 3,000 users and we have been getting a lot of those hoax calls. Investigating the calls I noticed that what is happening is that if the call is answered the generation system for the calls will take that number and use it as caller ID for future hoax calls.
Thats why they are impossible to block as the numbers they are appearing to come from are constantly changing and are actually real numbers.

Richard Coombes says:
13 February 2020

Re Phone Scam Purporting to be From Amazon, offering Amazon Prime renewal at £39.99 all you have to do is press 1 to speak to the Prime Accounts Manager. (All with an American automated voice) I have had a lot of these calls, every time I get one I hang up and dial 1471 and it is always from a different phone number. I contacted Amazon to report this yesterday via Amazon Chat,(I couldn’t find any other way of reporting a scam!). The person I spoke was sympathetic and stated they would make a note of my call, sent me a link to report it to police, but gave me no reassurance that Amazon would investigate this further!!!!

The advice to call ‘Action Fraud’ is pointless, they’re not interested unless you’ve ACTUALLY lost money. Little wonder why nothing ever gets done about these scams, clearly those with the power to stop them don’t seem interested. From my own perspective I’ve been receiving several scam calls every week for the last 2-3 years. Calls vary from “We’ve been notified you recently had an accident” or “hello this is BT Open Reach and our systems are detecting malicious activity on your computer” and even the Amazon scam mentioned above. In fact I had three calls on the same day for that one and each time I add those numbers to my blocked senders list and yet they still call using a different number each time. I get so hacked off with these calls some of which are during the early hours of the morning that I now shout abuse at them or if I’m feeling in the mood I play along and record their calls just to waste their time. Why is it always Indian scammers who phone me?!!

Because so many service companies in this country use Indian call centers, where no doubt, information is being skimmed off to sell to these scammers.

Wiktoria says:
14 February 2020

Omg that’s what’s been happening to me throughout last year ! Phone calls everyday in the morning so early that most households do sleep at that time most the time Indians or people who been speaking so weird and quick that I couldn’t understand! And also I used to get not only in the morning but also at evening calls always been calling at 7 pm 8 pm or even 9 pm !! Just by the time I knew straight away this is not genuine call and didn’t even pick up but in the morning few times I picked up and most of the time they been calling me to say we have you in our database saying you had accident in the past 3 years ! Or Bt special offer crap 💩! Even once that I won iPhone I was absolutely sure of the call because I actually did enter giveaway for iPhones and tablets but in the middle of conversation the guy said we need your card details !!!! I said for WHAT ? He said we’ll need to take single charge of 48 pounds!! Straight away hearing this I said oh really I was thinking it’s giveaway what a scam and just hang up ! I was so happy I didn’t give my details but I never had amazon call I’m on contract with Vodafone i would think they call everyone doesn’t matter if pre paid or contract ? Not sure 🤔 but since I changed my SIM card from EE that I used to get those call on that sim it all stoped since I’m with Vodafone I also downloaded app from AppStore that blocks spam calls and every time a scam calls you u see a note pinned to that number saying bt scam , or insurance scam which is so helpful the best thing is people add those numbers from them self so no one else will get in the trap also shows you from which city in uk they call you from 🙂

Mr. R. John Billing says:
13 February 2020

Have received 6 + calls (recorded message) over the past eight weeks from 07985508122, advising me my Amazon account has been compromised.
No information given; now unable to ring back the above number.

I received it twice this week.. second time I was aware so hung up. The first time I was woken up so could not understand the gravity of it. I had cancelled my membership last year. They convinced me it has been reactivated in error so if I want to keep it cancelled I need to generate an ID number using my laptop.. they had the actual date I cancelled
They tricked me to load exe.file from Amazon Help Desk page which was very genuine
The downloaded was just team viewer app. This gave them access to my laptop.
Luckily I insisted on one off download as soon as they asked me to log on to Amazon account I woke up alarm bell rang in my mind and I hung up and I switched the laptop off did not use it for 2 weeds

Malcolm Mort says:
13 February 2020

Why cant bt have a dedicated phone number to contact about these scam calls.When they receive a report about these phone numbers they can then terminate these telephone numbers which would prevent other people receiving calls from the scammers

Linda says:
13 February 2020

Amazon are robers
My son had to pay £200 for prime which he never wanted
They just kept taking money out of his account

Linda, Amazon Prime costs £7.99 a month.

If your son paid £200 and is still paying, he is likely being scammed from somewhere else not Amazon.

Phil Biggs says:
14 February 2020

He fell for the scam then . . . . . expensive mistake.
And it isn’t Amazon that’s doing the robing.
However, if he handed over his hard-earned cash by credit card he will be protected. Get him to contact the card issuer if he is.

Stephanie Fletcher says:
14 February 2020

V

I got an email with the same payment request

We can get up to 3 calls a day with this scam and other scams as well.
Call blocking is a pain because the numbers they spoof are different every time – so I don’t bother beacuse I will end up with half the world blocked if I do – and it is not worth the time & effort!!!!
Have been on the telephone preference service for a long time and this doesn’t stop these calls.

Terry Hall says:
14 February 2020

the main objective of these calls is simply another way of getting into your computer whereupon they will ‘help’ you to cancel your subscription to amazon !!

John Robins says:
14 February 2020

The Amazon Prime scam has been going for at least six months. I’ve had several calls to all of my landline numbers and the robotic voice with a female American accent informs me that my Amazon Prime account (I do not have one) will be renewed for a fee of $39.99. I have e-mailed Amazon about this but had no response.

e a haynes says:
14 February 2020

I have had similar calls from the ‘fraud department of Visa, Mastercard’ telling me that a possibly fraudulent payment for £600 pounds has been made on my card-if I hadn’t authorised it I should press the no1 button .Having not heard of any merger between the two companies I realised at once it was a scam. I simply do nothing and let the message run until I hear the disconnect signal. I may be misguided but I hope they are paying for this lost time!

Allan says:
14 February 2020

It’s now time for a new law to make it illegal for company’s to sell/pass on your details and the person who should face charges is the CEO not some scape goat of a manager a good CEO of any company knows exactly what his employees are doing .But yet again the government rely on customer to do thier work for them yes it’s good we have regulators but alas no real power to hit these scammers so the only way forward is a law and prosecute the CEO reguardless of company location call blocking your own phone is a joke .

JIM TOMLINSON says:
14 February 2020

I have received several phone calls from various numbers with ‘An american lady with a southern drawl saying my account will be deducted by $39.99 thirty nine niney nine, is how she says it.
These have been coming in since November or so.
I just ignore them and report the numbers to by ISP Virgin as I’m paying for call blocking but much use it is with these and other calls still getting through.

Tony Leggett says:
14 February 2020

I have a call blocking telephone and I do not get any scam calls at all. I would advise anyone who is bothered by scammers and time wasters to get a call blocking phone asap.

Linda Bennett says:
14 February 2020

I hadn’t realised that it was an Amazon Prime scam when I received an automated call saying that my Prime account would continue (I do not have a Prime account) mainly because my last package arrived in a PRIME ENVELOPE! On receiving the phone call I thought perhaps that I had inadvertently ticked on my order to join Prime. I therefore pressed 1 to explain that I was not a member, but became suspicious when the woman kept asking me if I had a mobile or tablet. Amazon should not send packages labelled PRIME if it is not a Prime order, it confuses people.

Chris Ludlam says:
14 February 2020

I receive several of these calls a week on my landline..The latest one,just a few minutes ago,utilized the same format but the price quoted was now “79.99” !!! Different recorded voice but same scam. I immediately replaced the receiver. Please do the same!

Phil Rowe says:
14 February 2020

If I actually speak to the caller I ask if it’s a SCAM call. Then, when they deny it , I ask if it’s alright to test my scam call software on the call. I then hold the phone up to my smoke alarm and press the test button! They always hang up…they must be SCAMMERS. As for the Amazon scam, I’ve noted the numbers and called them back from a PAYT phone. Most numbers are not recognised but some are genuine. One was the phone of an elderly lady in Portsmouth. Both she and her friend close by had problems with their lines but the engineers couldn’t identify the problem. A similar situation was confirmed by a lady in Ireland. These scammers appear to be able to highjack a number somehow.