How To Spot A Remote Access Scam

Message from our local Police


Dear Watch Member,

A Remote Access scam is when criminals contact you out of the blue, pretending to be the representative of a reputable organisation. This may be a telephone or internet provider or sometimes a bank or other service provider.

Once the criminals have your attention, you’ll usually be offered services such as;

  • fixing, upgrading or protecting your computer or device, internet service or the websites you use
  • help getting you a refund for an overpayment
  • help stopping a payment from leaving your account

In order to provide you with their ‘help’ criminals will typically ask you to assist by allowing them access to your computer or mobile device. To do this, they may ask you to download software to your computer, or download an app to your mobile device, and accept their request for access. After successfully gaining access to your computer or mobile device, criminals may ask you to log onto your Online Banking.

They may have told you a story about why you need to make a payment or they’ll set up the payment themselves if they have access to your Online Banking; to complete their scam they’ll need you to take some action. Usually, they’ll ask you to share codes sent to your phone (OTPs) or authorise activity yourself through a Mobile Banking app.

If you ever get a call like this, hang up immediately and follow the below tips to help protect yourself.

– Never share a One Time Passcode (OTP) with another person, not even an employee of your bank.

– Never authorise a transaction using the Mobile Banking app that you haven’t requested yourself. Check the details match the transaction you intend to make.

– Never download software or let anyone remotely log on to your computer or other devices, either during or after a cold call.

– Never enter your Online Banking details after clicking on a link in an email or text message.

If you need to reply regarding this message, tap on this email address: [email protected]

Lee O’Brien
Pinner Safer Neighbourhood Team
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 020 8721 2775