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'A completely new scam': Warning over scam that allows online bank accounts to be accessed remotely

The scam is believed to target those with banking apps on their smartphones.

Image: Shutterstock/Motortion Films

A WARNING HAS been issued about a new type of scam that reportedly allows fraudsters to remotely access people’s bank accounts through their mobile phones.

The scam – known as a ‘SIM Card swap’ – is said to enable fraudsters to control mobile users’ bank accounts by taking over their smartphones while they are locked.

It is believed to target people who have online banking apps on their smartphones, which fraudsters can access by using the user’s unique SIM Card IP address.

Garda Sergeant John Kelly told C103′s Cork Today Show that an Eir Mobile customer in Dublin was hit by the scam earlier this week.

“The injured party noticed that their phone signal was lost for approximately two hours,” Kelly said.

“When the signal returned to the phone, a quick approval loan of €7,000 had been applied for on the AIB Online function that he used.”

Kelly also said that there were a number of other attempts to transfer money via person’s SIM Card IP address while their signal was down, all of which failed.

He added that the easiest way to avoid becoming victim to the scam was to use secure WiFi connections.

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“This is a new one, it’s completely new to me,” he said. “If you had talked to me about this last week, I wouldn’t have heard of it.”

A Garda spokesman told TheJournal.ie that it was not aware of any major problem related to this type of scam in Ireland.

“Our advice is for phone customers is to notify their service provider if they notice any unusual activity,” the spokesman added.

A spokesperson for Eir Mobile has been contacted for comment.

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