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Fraud Alert

Beware: Fraud is on the increase!

Fraudsters are always inventing new methods and scams to steal from you. Here are some of the most common ones:

Recovering your logon details and SMS confirmation codes

Take care: scammers may pretend to be an HSBC fraud specialist, technical support or the police.

Scammers often say they need your details to cancel a fraudulent transaction, or test your online banking connection, after spotting some irregularities.

Their main objectives:

  • steal your logon ID and single use SMS codes, so they can make fraudulent transfers from your account without you knowing. 
  • steal your bank card number, expiry date and security code, and 3D Secure SMS codes, to make fraudulent online card transactions.

Remember: 3D Secure SMS codes are sent when you make a transaction online. They only allow you to complete transactions NOT cancel them.

To make their requests more believable, fraudsters can use a ‘spoofing’ technique when they call. They hide their real phone number and replace it with another, maybe even an HSBC number.

Good to know:

  • HSBC will never ask for your online banking details (login ID, login single use codes and adding transfer beneficiaries).

If you share these details, you enable fraudsters to access your account, add new beneficiaries and make transfers in your name.

  • HSBC will never ask you for your bank cards details (card number, expiry date, security code), or 3D Secure SMS codes.

If you share these details, you allow fraudsters to make fraudulent online card transactions. Your SMS code will never cancel a transaction, only confirm it.

  • HSBC will never ask you to install software on your computer, or connect to online banking ‘Ma banque en ligne’ from a link in an email.

Our advice:

  • never share your logon details or your single use codes with anyone. Do the same for your bank card: this code is strictly personal, same as your 3D Secure SMS code for confirming online transactions
  • if you share any of these details, or if you get an SMS for an online card transaction you haven’t made: contact us straight away
  • beware of emails you receive: we all get lots of emails every day. Some may even claim to be from HSBC or another respectable organisation. Never respond to emails asking for personal information and never open attachments if you have any doubts
  • never log on to online banking from a link you received by email or over the phone, and never agree to install software on your computer when asked by technical support or a so-called fraud specialist.

 

Find out more at our Security Centre.

Phishing emails

These scams often adopt the identity of banks, public services, companies and associations. Their main goal is to steal confidential information or install computer viruses such as malware or ransom ware.

These are some of the most common reasons used to contact you:

  • Information requests
  • Security updates to consider
  • Support campaigns to help fight COVID-19

Don’t click on links or attachments in a suspicious email and never reply to messages or unsolicited calls asking for personal information or bank details. Forward any suspicious emails to phishing.hsbc.com

Beware of online investment scams

Investment scams are on the increase. To make them more credible, fraudsters often use the identities of respected companies to deceive even the most careful customers. These offers can include:

  • precious metals,
  • spirits alcoholic beverages,
  • livestock,
  • medical cannabis,
  • cryptocurrencies,
  • exclusive high-rate savings accounts.

Unfortunately, this list can’t be exhaustive as fraudsters add new scams all the time. To find out more, check the investment website blacklist created by AMF, the French stock market regulator.

Cheque delivery scams following contact via social networks

Fraudsters will also try to lure you through social networks such as Instagram©, Facebook© or Snapchat©. 

After contacting you on social networks and gaining your trust, they will ask you to deposit cheques into your account in exchange for financial compensation.

  • Following the handing over of the cheques, they ask you to transfer the funds by transfer to different beneficiaries,
  • Unfortunately, the cheques will come back unpaid and the money transferred to the beneficiaries will be lost.

Warning: In addition to financial loss, this type of scam can expose you to possible prosecution for fraud!

How to spot scam

The golden rule is to remember that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is, so you should always be suspicious of an overly attractive offer. Here are some more warning signs you should watch out for:

  • The fraudster communicates only by email or telephone, and very rarely meets in person. 
  • The fraudster may request personal documents or confidential information (such as identity cards, passport, bank details and even your banking ID/password,
  • The fraudster may ask you to deposit one or more cheques and then ask you to make a money transfer.

What to do if you have suspicions

  • Consult the blacklist of fraudulent investment sites, 
  • When you are allegedly contacted on behalf of a known financial institution, check to see if the offer really exists by visiting an agency or by contacting an official telephone number (and not the one mentioned on the fraudulent offer),
  • Do not communicate any confidential documents or information by email, telephone or mail, 
  • Do not deposit cheques on behalf of strangers or provide your bank details to them
  • Never perform any money transfers at the request of strangers! 

For more information, please visit our Security page. 

Contact us by phone

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*Dial +33810246810 within France (service €0.09 per call + call price) and for service outside France (cost varies by operator).

Monday to Friday 08:00-20:00; Saturday 09:00-17:30.

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