WHATSAPP users are being warned to look out for a ‘hey mum’ scam after parents ended up losing thousands of pounds.
Hundreds of parents have reported being targeted by scammers who sent them an innocent “hello mum” o “hello dad” testo.
Cruel fraudsters have scammed over £1.5million in just four months in the UK.
The scammers usually claim they are texting from a new number because their phone was lost.
A mum told Wales Live how she was not suspecting a thing when she received a text that read: “La POLIZIA sta avvertendo gli utenti di WhatsApp di una truffa subdola che ha fatto irruzione nella tua banca, it’s your favourite daughter”.
So when the scammer pretending to be her daughter said she needed £900 to pay a standing order Margaret agreed to help.
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Lei disse: “Because she had just had a baby and had been on maternity leave, I assumed she was paying nursery fees.
“They asked for £900 but I only had £700 in my bank account so I replied and said do you want me to go to the building society and put more in or could I do it by credit card.
“They said yes, credit card was fine.”
But luckily for Margaret, the payment didn’t go through even though she rang the bank to confirm the payment was for her daughter.
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The scammer then changed the amount they were asking for and the account they wanted the money into.
Margaret discovered she was about to be a victim of a scam after ringing her second daughter asking why her sister kept asking for money.
Lei ha aggiunto: “I was very lucky because it was £900,
“It wasn’t a small amount. It was upsetting, I was crying afterwards and thinking how could I have been so stupid?
“If I’d had enough money in my account, I would’ve just paid it over online banking.”
Earlier this year Patricia Land lost £2,200 to a scammer posing as her son.
She said she received a message “so clever” che legge: “‘Hi Mum, my phone has fallen, it’s completely broken, I’ve had to get a new one, can you save this new number’ then some kisses.”
Once she realised she was being scammed Patricia said she felt “violato”.
Lei disse: “You hear about scams, a long-lost relative who wants you to follow a link, but this was personal.
“It’s not like I’ve bought some goods and they haven’t arrived – this just feels so personal and it makes you feel violated.”
South Wales Police has issued a new warning to people in Wales after 60 people reported having lost money in the app scam this year.
Ha detto: “We’re continuing to warn people about the increase in reports of scams where victims are targeted on WhatsApp by criminals pretending to be someone they know, such as their children.
“Criminals typically begin the conversation with “Hello Mum” or “Hello Dad”, and will say they’re texting from a new number as their phone was lost or damaged.
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“They then ask for money to purchase a new one, or claim that they need money urgently to pay a bill.
“The criminal will provide bank details for the payment to be made to, with some coming back with further demands for money.”