Vishing is the telephone equivalent of Phishing. A fraudster pretends to be someone from a bank/building society; they may say they are from the Police or another legitimate organisation such as a telephone or Internet provider. 

They attempt to get financial information, which often includes card and bank account details, pin numbers and personal details about you, such as your full name, date of birth and address. This information can then be used to plunder the your account or commit identity fraud. 

Although low tech, Vishing is fast becoming the prefered method for criminals to obtain your personal information.

According to the Financial Fraud Action UK twenty three percent of us have received a cold call requesting personal or financial information, potentially meaning we could become a victim of a scam. Forty percent of those contacted, admitted they found it difficult to tell the difference between a genuine and fraudulent call.

The scam works because the fraudster uses psychological techniques, to get the “target” to divulge confidential information. This often takes the form of implying a sense of urgency to the request being made, be it further fraudulent activity on a bank/credit card or some catastrophic disaster is about to occur on your computer. In most cases, all that the perpetrator needs is a voice that sounds authoritative, an earnest tone, and the ability to think on one's feet to create a convincing scenario.

The pretext can take many forms and constantly evolves, therefore citing examples could be misleading. But the common feature is an unexpected telephone call, with a ruse intended to induce panic into the potential victim.

The fraudster may already have got hold of some basic information about you, such as a name, address and even bank account details, to make the call appear to be legitimate. Do not assume a caller is genuine just because they hold some information about you.

Some of the “tricks of the trade” include asking the person to tap their PIN number into the phone to keep it secret - but all the while the noise on the phone keypad is being monitored to identify the numbers.

Scammers also convince their victims they are a real, by asking them to ring back on the correct number for the organisation, but they keep the phone line open, by not hanging up. So when the person calls the genuine number they are still speaking to the fraudster or an accomplice. 

In some cases, fraudster's send couriers to collect your credit cards for analysis etc., having already blagged the four digit PIN from you. This has become known as Courier Fraud.

Vishing fraudsters, like most other criminals, have no scruples or moral conscience. Their preferred prey is the elderly and the vulnerable



To aviod becoming a victim remember :- 


Your bank or the Police will NEVER: 

Ask for your 4 digit PIN.

Ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them or transfer money to another account, even if they say it is in your name.

Come to your home to collect your cash, Bank/Credit card or cheque book.

Ask you to purchase goods using your card and then hand them over for safe keeping

Never disclose your:-

4 digit PIN, passwords or memorable data to anyone who may phone you.


Never give your:-

Personal details to unsolicited callers unless you are absolutely sure who you are talking to.



It takes two people to terminate a call, use a different phone line or mobile to return the call. If you can't wait at least 5 miniutes before making the call. 

If you are suspicious or feel vulnerable, don’t be afraid to terminate the call, and say no to requests for information.




Vishing Video (The adverts at the beginning of this video are not endorsed by this Web site) 

If you think you’ve already been a victim of this scam, contact your bank or card company immediately.

If a crime has been committed

Report it to Action Fraud.