Published On: Wed, Jun 8th, 2022

Frontline Covid nurse in tears and ‘traumatised’ after losing £18,000 | Personal Finance | Finance


Appearing on BBC One’s Dirty Rotten Scammers, Melissa shared the story of how she was defrauded out of her hard-earned savings. At the time, she was working as a nurse during the Covid pandemic and was self-isolating from friends and family. In April 2021, the 69-year old from Great Yarmouth had just finished a round of night shifts at work and was enjoying her first week off in over a year.

At the same time, the fraudsters wanted to gain access to her phone to get into online banking but Melissa used facial recognition to open it.

When attempting to access her account, the scammers were asked to provide authorisation and asked her to turn her camera on so they could get into her account.

Once they were in full control of her money, the scammers then transferred £3,000 into the supposed safe account.

The fraudsters promised Melissa it would be returned to her as soon as possible when the account was “secured”.

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Believing this person was genuine, Melissa downloaded an app which gave them access to her computer.

While on her device, the scammers set up a new bank account which they named as a safe account.

They told Melissa it would be a temporary place to save her money. The scammers did not ask for any private information, including passwords.

At the same time, the fraudsters wanted to gain access to her phone to get into online banking but Melissa uses facial recognition to open it.

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When attempting to access her account, the scammers were asked to provide authorization and asked her to turn her camera on so they could get into her account.

Once they were in full control of her money, the scammers then transferred £3,000 into the apparently safe account

The fraudsters promised Melissa it would be returned to her as soon as possible when the account was secured.

However, she received further calls to notify her that more of her money had been targeted and needed to be placed into the safe account.

Soon enough, another £3,000 of Melissa’s savings was moved to the scammers’ new account.

Over the course of six days, the Covid nurse lost a staggering £18,000 to the convincing scam.

During that period of time, Melissa said she received no notifications from her bank about any unusual activity on her account.

She said her realisation was “probably at the end of that week because I couldn’t see my money coming back”. Recalling that moment, she added: “My god, I’ve been scammed.”

However, by the end of the week, Melissa came to the realisation that she had been unfairly targeted in a very real scam all along.

She explained: “Probably at the end of that week because I couldn’t see my money coming back. My god, I’ve been scammed.”

On how she felt about the situation, Melissa: “Terrible. Awful. That’s money that I’ve saved over the years and it’s gone.”

“Now I’m scared when my phone goes off and I don’t recognise the number. I just think ‘who can it be?’. Traumatised.”

Those interested in uncovering more scams can watch Dirty Rotten Scammers on BBC iPlayer.



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