/ Scams

Scam alert: fake Amazon ‘locked account’ emails

We’ve noticed an increase in fake Amazon emails stating that your account has been ‘locked’ and that it’s ‘holding all your last orders’. Here’s what it looks like.

We’ve seen examples of fake Amazon emails many times, but a new example claiming your account has been ‘locked’ could look genuine enough to deceive you if you don’t take a moment to assess it.

Its layout is slick – the branding looks genuine and the message is clear: act now or all your ‘pending orders’ will be cancelled. It even adds a sense of panic by claiming that ‘the billing information you provided did not match the information on file’ with the card issuer:

But when you take a step back from the initial surprise at getting an email prompt from ‘Amazon’, you’ll soon start to spot the signs of a fake. The text contains a number of obvious errors including missing words, typos, and claims that just don’t add up.

Investigating the sender’s email address further will also reveal that they have absolutely nothing to do with Amazon (not shown here). Its ultimate goal is to encourage you to click through to a site where you’ll be asked to input sensitive personal information, likely including your bank details.

Amazon responds to fake emails

We showed Amazon a copy of this phishing email so it could investigate the sender and the link that the ‘account verify’ button sends people through to. A spokesperson said:

“Amazon impersonation scams put our customers at risk. While these scams happen outside our stores, we will continue to invest in protecting them – we encourage consumers to report any suspicious emails to Amazon so that we can protect their accounts and hold these fraudsters accountable through litigation and law enforcement referrals. Customers can visit our help centre to find additional information on how to identify scams and report them so we can investigate.”

We’ll continue to make Amazon aware of the latest scams impersonating its brand so it can investigate and take action.

Have you received a scam Amazon email?

If you think you may have given your details to fraudsters, let your bank know immediately.

Guide: how to spot a scam

Guide: how to get your money back after a scam

Have you received a fake email, text or call claiming to be from Amazon? Let us know what happened in the comments.


Comments

The cost of living crisis and the general malaise within the government to do anything other than help themselves to others peoples money.

Marcia Flanagan says:
19 February 2022

This is a diffferent Question Have you any comments about the Eco Chip Which you can plug into your car yourself if your Car is adaptable which helps petrol consumption Seems to good to be true xxsorry old lady worrying if any good to buy x

Hi Marcia – I suspect that this is a scam, like so many other products supposed to save fuel. Can you please give us some more information about the product you are looking at and I will try and find some information about it?

Engine’s ECUs are set up by the manufacturer for a particular combination of performance characteristics. They can be remapped to give preference to different ones, such as economy at the expense of acceleration. It may be a chip does that but normally you would go to a specialist to have the ECU modified.

That’s right, but did you know that some engine management systems are fitted to seriously powerful high performance engines but are programmed to run the engine at a much lower performance so it will run more economically and/or so it will meet emission standards, or so it will last longer but the ECU can be reprogrammed to maximise the engine performance and make it run as a fire breathing beast, and that’s what some drivers do.

Have had calls in the past telling me I owe payment to Amazon Prime – which I do not subscribe to.
Ignore the call and check my Amazon a/c.

Robert Ratter says:
20 February 2022

I regularly get these phone calls, usually recorded messages. I just ignore them but I haven’t reported them to Amazon as I get so many of them that I have assumed that Amazon already knows about them and will do something about it.

Ian Harris says:
21 February 2022

Once or twice a month we receive calls about how they are going to take £960 from my account.
I have told colleagues to be on the alert and spread this information to their friends and family

I have two or three phone calls a week from amazon scammers saying they will be taking £79.99 from my account to renew my Amazon Prime subscription. Press one to stop the payment. This is always an automated voice.
I know when my renewal date is so I ignore them. I’m just fed up with getting them. It’s no good blocking the number as they always use different ones.

Linda says:
21 February 2022

I also had this phone call and when i didnt answer call they had left a voice message to press one i blocked it from my phone.

Andrew Church-Taylor says:
21 February 2022

I received a call purportedly from Amazon to advise me that they had cancelled my most recent order.
I asked that the caller confirm what I had ordered. He again repeated that Amazon had cancelled my last order . One again I asked that he tell me what I had ordered.
Obviously frustrated and deciding that there was little chance of progressing his scam the caller told me to p*** off and abruptly ended the call

Elaine Stevens says:
22 February 2022

I’ve had emails and calls that say they are from Amazon. The calls I add to my reject list (though they use many, many different numbers). The emails I forward to the Amazon fraud dept. It’s never ending but if we don’t report it they are less likely to be caught.

Ken Giscarne says:
22 February 2022

This ‘notice’ is in the usual pidgin-english, like all of these so-called ‘scams’. Where Which get the idea that the layout is slick and the message clear, I cannot imagine. It’s illiterate, and It’s not going to fool anyone who paid attention at school. Perhaps it says something about the current standard of education at Which?

I had this kind of email telling me my account would be locked and my orders lost if I didn’t verify clicking that key, but I hadn’t ordered anything lately, so I thought it would be a fake and didn’t reply. I reported it here to Which? and I am glad to get the confirmation it was a scam. Amazon will know this is circulating. I think they should warn customer not to click on anything or accept a phone call. If they are worried about orders, they should just log into their account.

Cynthia says:
8 April 2022

My husband received a fake email from a personal gmail account “Thank you for your Prime membership renewal. Your Prime 1 year Plan is under process. The subscription will automatically renew £ 286 unless you cancel it off no later than 24 hours before the end of the current period. If you wish to request any changes or to cancel the subscription and have your refund back, Contact our Cancellation Help-Desk : +44 1233 28 0944

Here is a product details of your recent purchase :-
Order No :- 512965434
Billing Date :- 04/08/2022
Payment Mode : – Debit/Credit Card
Renewal Fee :- £ 286

How to cancel Prime membership : Prime users can cancel at any time, and we will refund the full fee if the user has not made any eligible purchase or used any Prime products. If You Wish To Cancel or Want To Make Changes, Please Contact On Our Cancellation Help-Line : +44 1233 28 0944

Sincerely,
Invoice Team
Hope to see you soon”