/ Technology

Have you been called by a ‘BT technical support’ phone scam?

Scam written on keyboard

Has the ‘Microsoft technical support’ phone scam evolved? Is it now the ‘BT technical support’ scam? We’ve heard from people who’ve been called… and we want to see whether there are more of you out there.

Remember the Microsoft support scam? It starts with a nuisance call, but can end with your PC being compromised and a dent in your bank account.

An unsolicited caller claims to be working for Microsoft’s support team, they ask to remotely access your PC, they ‘prove’ that your computer’s infected with viruses, and they offer to fix it for a fee.

The thing is, they’re not from Microsoft and your computer may be virus free. And even if your PC was infected, you could get it in ship shape condition with free antivirus software.

Hundreds of you have told us that you’ve been subject to this scam. Microsoft’s own survey found that one in five people in the UK have been called by one of these scam callers. Of those who fell victim to the scam, the average amount lost was  £745.

The ‘BT technical support’ scam

We’ve now received reports that the scam has changed, or at least that it’s evolved to be a call from ‘BT’s support team’.

One Which? member told us he thought he was speaking to someone from BT – he was then tricked into paying the best part of £400 to remove viruses from his PC.

Our Twitter follower Brian experienced something similar. He was called by someone claiming to work for BT’s Wi-Fi team. They told him there were problems with the broadband connection in his area and that they needed remote access to his computer to fix it. This took control away from Brian, his computer shut down and now he can’t start it up.

So we want to hear from you – have you been called by someone claiming to be from BT’s support team? Did they remotely access your computer? Share your experiences in the comments below.

Advice on technical support scams

Oh, and some advice for you if you’re called by one of these scammers, whether they purport to be from BT, Microsoft or another company. A caller does not know whether your PC is infected with viruses. Do not ever let a caller remotely access your PC – this hands them the keys to your personal data. And never hand over your bank details to an unsolicited caller.

If you think you’ve been a victim, run a virus scan, alert your bank and contact Action Fraud to report the scam.

One final thing you can do to help call time on scams is sign our stop nuisance calls peitition.


I get loads of these calls. They seem to have become part of my life now. I just ask them to answer some security questions and they usually hang up.

Gwen says:
13 March 2018

Had a call this morning – 01224481680 saying she was ringing from BT technical – problem with my internet – I challenged her and told her that I did not believe her. She said she could prove it with some security info – I told her I did not believe her – she hung up!

Nigel says:
28 February 2018

I had one of these calls a couple of days ago. She said she was from BT Openreach and told me that there was a problem with my Internet connection. I told her everything was fine and that there was no Internet problem (incidentally we are Virgin Media but did not tell her that). She insisted that there was indeed a problem and could fix it for me. I said that what she was saying was ridiculous and made no sense whatsoever, I then went on to suggest that she was part of a scam and should be ashamed of herself. Again she insisted it was not a scam and that she was genuine. I said “sorry, but this is the end of the call” she said “You just broke my heart”.

Lorne Roper says:
1 March 2018

I receive these calls quite often. I have just received another and hung up immediately, dialled 1471 and the caller’s number was 020 8370 5952.


You did just what many people will not do Put the phone down at immediately They listen carefully to every word then complain to all and sundry I do not receive this sort of call because I do not answer any call from numbers unknown to me Answer calls from Withheld numbers fools you are


You have a point Bishbut I got inundated with emails when ,years ago I put my real name online but I never answered nor clicked on any of them , gradually they all got the message and took me off their computerised auto calling list . The same applies to scam/sales calls – if you dont answer , eventually they stop , I never answer those calls , in any case I have a call blocker that does it for me. The problem is many people cant help themselves they hear the phone ringing and must answer it this means all the callers know you are there (live bait ) , you answered the phone and will now sell your info to another third party to harass you as well .


There are ways to discourage these calls which I used when I did answer ” pick up the phone say nothing at all not even hello just listen the caller usually end the call quickly ” ” If they ask for you by name say not ” me but I will go and get him or her rest the phone down somewhere and return to it in a few minutes to a dead phone” Both will deter the caller from repeatedly calling

ChrisM says:
12 March 2018

It is not always good to reject calls from withheld numbers as doctors, medical staff, genuine service engineers, bank staff, etc. often use withheld numbers, but the call might be very important for you.


I agree, Chris. It’s unwise simply to ignore calls.

Scams occur when people act on advice or instructions. Even if a call seems genuine, end it and make contact with the company or organisation using a number you have looked up, never one you have been given over the phone. If you have had no contact with a company before then don’t contact them.


I always ask for the number people will be calling from if they say it will be a withheld number i ask for the exact time they will ring I then answer withheld calls about that time My doctors own surgery number is withheld but the general surgery number is not (it’s on my calls list) so I can be contacted if anything is urgent People will contact you by other means if you do not answer withheld calls if the actually need to contact you Many do not want to miss out on anything and so it seems losing money Some must answer ALL calls and listen carefully to all that is said and do what they are asked to do without stopping to think No wonder some will fall for the simplest well known scam

Lorne Roper says:
2 March 2018

Further to yesterday’s comment, I have now received 6 calls from 3 different people claiming to be from BT Technical support – all on the same number: 0208 570 5952 (not 0208 370 5952 as I mistakenly reported yesterday).


Plenty of comments on your phone scammer here Lorne:

Can you block the number or write it down and ignore it next time? Whatever you do, never call them back as it could prove a very expensive phone call as it is unlikely to be a genuine London number.

Wendy says:
4 March 2018

I have had two calls in the last week allegedly from bt saying my Internet is running slow and if I log on and input a code they give me they can see where the problem is . I led him on for a few minutes but didn’t do as he asked and he actually got angry. Was indian but had a name Lewis Johnson with a bt staff number 8600523926. Said he was going to turn my Internet off for 2 days to test it. I suppose that is when some may agree to do what he asks as they don’t want that to happen. My internet is still on. They were calling from 0017278474277. I will be blocking it but it sems they call from different numbers.