Email and phone scams continue to become more pervasive and varied as cybercrime grows, and one of the latest forms involves scammers claiming to work for Virgin Media.
The telecoms company has issued a warning in response to the reports of the fraudulent communication. Virgin Media suffered a notable data breach last year, and we are currently taking on claimants in a group action against the company. However, there is no evidence that these scammers are linked to the data breach, but there is a good reason as to why we need to look at how the two could, even if in theory, be linked.
Personal data is a valuable commodity to fraudsters, and there is a lot of money to be made by the theft and resale of private information. With a few simple contact details, scammers may be able to manipulate unsuspecting victims into handing over further personal data. This has happened before with data breaches and scammers have targeted victims, even passing themselves off as the breached company by exploiting exposed information. This is why it is important to talk about these issues in the context of a breach.
Calls from scammers claiming to work for Virgin Media
Those affected by data breaches can often be at a higher risk of scams and fraudulent communication. As specialists in data protection law, we help victims of data breaches to claim the compensation they deserve for the risks they have been exposed to. As such, we know the risks all too well.
Recent reports have emerged of a new wave of calls from scammers claiming to work for Virgin Media, which are understood to have been targeted specifically at elderly residents of Renfrewshire. It is unclear exactly what the scammers are saying, but it is likely that they are trying to obtain bank account details to carry out fraud. The decision to target the older demographic is undoubtedly driven by the belief that older people will be less wary of the scams facing consumers and may, therefore, be more vulnerable.
In response, Virgin Media issued a warning confirming that they will never ask customers for bank details over the phone.
Similar scams have previously been noted in other areas of the country, including Oxfordshire, where some residents received several calls every day from scammers claiming to work for Virgin Media.
How scammers take advantage of data breaches
In their statement, Virgin Media directed customers to their online resources about the risks of fraud, with one spokesperson stating that the company “takes the security of its customers very seriously”. It is worth remembering that this claim is somewhat flawed given that Virgin Media exposed the data of 400,000 UK consumers last year, following a database configuration error that left the data unsecured for ten months.
To the topic on point, there is no proof that the scam calls are linked at all to the Virgin Media data breach. However, these types of calls are exactly the kind of risks victims were exposed to following the data breach, which is why we talk about this. The scammers claiming to work for Virgin Media may not have ever had access to the data leaked in the 2020 breach, but it is possible that they were inspired to take advantage of the security incident. For example, they could be trying to convince customers to disclose data on the basis that it was lost in the data breach.
This is why it is important that we discuss the issues of links between scams and data breaches, even where there are no direct links to the events at all.
Claiming compensation for a data breach
The Virgin Media group action is just one of the notable data breach cases for which we are representing claimants for. We know that the scams threatening data breach victims can cause real financial and emotional damage, which is why we want to make sure all those entitled to claim can receive the compensation they deserve.
IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.
Request a Callback from our team!
Fill out our quick call back form below and we’ll contact you when you’re ready to talk to us.
All fields marked * are required.
You have the right to object to the processing of your personal data.