How fraudsters can steal your details

Fraudsters will try to get hold of your information in many ways, including via email, phone calls and social media. It’s important to understand the most common techniques fraudsters use, so that you can spot the warning signs early.

Suspicious emails and text messages

Have you received an email or text message from someone you don’t know? Are they claiming to be from a well-known company or organisation, such as your bank or building society?

You should never click on a link in an email or text message asking you for your personal or financial details. It could lead to a fake website or cause a virus on your device.

These types of fraud are called ‘Phishing’ (via email) and ‘Smishing’ (via text message).

Things to watch out for:

  • If the message tells you to make a quick decision.

  • Bad grammar, spelling mistakes and messy layouts.

  • If you don’t recognise the sender’s email address or it contains strange words or characters.

  • Requests for personal or financial information.

Quick tips to stay safe:

  • Don’t click on any links you’re unsure about.

  • Report any suspect emails or text messages before deleting them.

  • Keep your devices up to date with the latest anti-virus software and protect them with a firewall.

  • Never let someone you don't know access your devices, especially remotely.

  • Set up 2 factor authentication where possible.

If you receive a message from Leeds Building Society that seems fake, please let us know. All our genuine emails end with ''. There will never be another word or character added on, such as ''.

Suspicious phone calls

Have you received an unexpected call pretending to be from a genuine company? Be aware of phone calls where the caller says:

  • There’s a problem with your account and they ask you for details to transfer money into another account.

  • You've won a prize and you need to make a payment to claim it.

  • You need to download software to your device (which will let the caller gain access to it).

  • There’s a problem with your internet and they need to log onto your device remotely.

These calls are likely to be fraudulent, so you should never give away your personal or financial information. This type of fraud is called ‘Vishing’.

Quick tips to stay safe:

  • Put the phone down if anyone asks for your personal or financial details, or to make a payment. We’ll never ask for your password over the phone, email or face-to-face.

  • If you share any details, call the company back with the number on their official website so you know it’s genuine. Use a different phone if you can, as fraudsters can listen to your outgoing calls.

  • Install a call blocker to stop calls from specific numbers.

If you believe your account(s) with us or your personal information is at risk, please let us know straight away.

Social media

Fraudsters can use social media to get your information or ask for money, sometimes by starting fake relationships.

They may also pretend to be you by contacting your friends and family to ask for money.

Quick tips to stay safe:

  • Fraudsters can get hold of your personal information, including your address or mobile number, from your social media profile, so think carefully before sharing information online.

  • Keep your profile private.

  • Don’t accept friend requests from someone you don’t know.

  • If you get a strange message or new request from a friend you already connect with online, don’t accept. They may have been hacked.

  • If someone you know asks for your bank details or money online, make sure they haven’t been hacked and speak to them directly. Don’t send any money.