/ Shopping

Scam watch: Amazon hacker’s £4k con


A member asked for our help when a fraudster hacked into their email and Amazon account, and racked up a £4k bill…

The member, who asked to remain anonymous, told us:

‘Both my email and Amazon accounts were hacked. The hacker altered my inbox settings so Amazon emails never arrived. Then they bought a £2,000 gaming laptop on the site. I reported it to Amazon and was refunded. Then my statement showed two more purchases, totalling another £2,000. The fraudster used Amazon Pay, and my card company refunded me under ‘Section 75’ rules. I assumed Amazon would relate these frauds to the original fraud, but it didn’t. It instead locked my account and demanded almost £1,000. I’ve contacted Amazon by email, phone and post but my account remains locked.’

Our say on hacked Amazon accounts

We contacted Amazon and it then got in touch with our member. It reactivated their account, cancelled the charge and sent them a gift card as an apology.

It’s unclear how the member’s email and Amazon accounts were compromised, as they used a different password for each, and there’s no suggestion that Amazon suffered a breach.

We advised the member to change both the password on their email and their Amazon account as soon as possible, and to activate two-factor verification. We also told them to cancel their card.

The member may have been ‘phished’, ie sent an email appearing to be from Amazon, directing them to log in on a false site. Always go directly to sites to log in. Don’t click through from emails.

You can send suspected spoof Amazon emails to stop-spoofing@amazon.com.


There has been a very recent rise in fraudulent emails purporting to originate from an Amazon marketplace trader, simply advising you that an order has been delayed, then a second one asking you to ignore the first. Amazon has published a warning about them on its account pages and it’s not yet clear what they’re about, but as always the advice is never, ever click a link in an email.

The answer, as Ian says, is not to click on links in emails. It would be great help if legitimate companies would stop using links in emails and to make consumers aware that any links in emails are likely to be fraudulent. Until this happens we are likely to continue to hear of people losing their money.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

…but two years old – at least.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Isn’t “secure cloud” an oxymoron?

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Duncan, sooner or later, any computer can get hacked.

Good security is all about multiple lines of defense, so that the effort required to break in is huge relative to potential rewards from doing so.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Duncan you just posted “Derek you asked -is it worthwhile ?” – I don’t recollect doing so today, so that’s another example of you putting words into the mouths of other posters, just as Ian has been complaining about.

If you want to use W?C as a soapbox, that’s fine by me, but please could you refrain from this style of posting, unless, of course, you are deliberately setting out to annoy other posters.

I know you may just be using it as kind of conversational device, but, if you have a compelling and interesting story to tell, you ought not to need such contrived ripostes as a means to further each Convo.

If you read the story from your link, Duncan, you will see that is was not, in fact, Amazon who was hacked at all.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Words into mouth ? ask Ian when he does that to me -makes up his mind how I think and posts it

Please post each example where I have done that, Duncan. I have already posted three examples of you doing about me and I’ve seen yet another this morning.

Sorry – these comments are off-topic. Can I again ask that you refrain from making personal comments about each other.

If you would like to discuss off-topic subject then please feel free to do so in The Lobby, however, rude and offensive comments will be moderated. I would suggest we draw a line under this and get back to discussing our Scam Watch 🙂

I don’t normally use Amazon but earlier this year I wanted to buy a book about a local artist as a gift for a former colleague on her retirement. The local bookshops had all sold out.

Looking back at the emails from Amazon, I see they are using links. Looking at other emails from companies that I have ordered from, they are using links too.

In her introduction, Faye gives good advice: “Always go directly to sites to log in. Don’t click through from emails.” I expect that most people will carry on clicking on links and phishing fraud will continue.

I wonder if we can promote responsible companies that don’t provide links in emails and simply ask customers to log into their account.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Ohh, Duncan, – do you ever wake up in the morning and think . . . I’ll find something positive to write about today? You must pass over hundreds of stories until you find something really pessimistic which you then embellish with dire threats to our health service or our diet. Look, no ‘deal’ can be imposed on the UK against our will; we are not leaving the EU just to jump into the arms of the USA, Trump or no Trump. At this stage of my life, at least 80% of it having probably already elapsed, I see no point in worrying about these things. I try to look on the bright side.

On a practical point, being in the EU we have to let foreign companies without a base in the UK compete for our major goods and services contracts. After we have left we can make our own rules on who will be allowed to compete. Naturally, the scope will be widened to include countries that at the moment do not have an automatic right to compete but we can still exclude them from contracts where the national interest justifies it. And with regard to the NHS, there will be no automatic right for foreign firms to compete for contracts and it will not be compulsory for contracts to be put out to tender unless the government so decides. So if there is no tendering there will be no competing. Let’s hope for the best in the future.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Isn’t saying ‘I do care deeply for the human race’ a bit like saying ‘I do care deeply about Pluto’s demotion’? Objective and far enough away not to worry about too much.

You see, from my perspective, the Human Race brings just about everything on itself. It’s adept at poisoning the planet’s atmosphere, it’s rapacious, predatory, utterly selfish and generally not a terribly good advert for the planet or the species. If a level 2 civilisation were to discover us at some point, and demanded a case be made for the continuation of the Human Race I’d be hard put to find something positive to say.

I fact, I can’t see how anyone can ‘care deeply’ about the Human Race. I care deeply about my family. I care about friends. I don’t care about anything as remote or as sprawling as woodworm, Trypanosomiasis, Babesia bovis or Wildebeest migrations, although each might hold a passing interest in and of itself.

Yes, I did read your comment, Duncan. I think the US Democrats are onto a winner if they want the American health system to emulate our NHS which is widely regarded as a model – if only we could make it more efficient and economical but still achieve clinical excellence.

But this Conversation is about how we as individuals can plan for the help and care we might need in our later lives and how we can fund it.

This comment was removed at the request of the user

I have to admit that my time for thinking about the rest of the world is over. My priorities right now are to plan for the possibility that we shall have to stop living at home and go into some form of residential care. It will largely depend on what condition we are in at the time and whether nursing is necessary; that would worry me more than the cost of a place in a care home.

While I might have given up thinking about the rest of the world, i.e. its people and politics, I do try to do my bit for the planet.

I don’t think looking after your own (and family’s) interests excludes benefit to the “world”. Using less energy is good for both, as is choosing a more economical, less polluting car, choosing where food comes from, having a productive garden. Individually we cannot solve the worlds problems, only worry about them, but every little helps.

We live, it seems to me, in an age where many people feel “entitled” to something, whether financial support, a job, free care…… but seem less willing to accept that they should also earn rewards by making their own contribution to the society they live in. This society does not abandon people like this; we all chip in.

I’m aware that as life ticks by some catastrophe, major or more minor, could change my independence and am prepared for that through prudent saving. But I don’t know how we can change the attitude of others who have a live now, pay (or not) later philosophy. We only, we are told, live once so maybe they have the right attitude?

This comment was removed at the request of the user