A VICTIM of fraud was left screaming in despair after watching scammers drain a staggering £71,700 of inheritance from her bank account.
On Wednesday's instalment of Dirty Rotten Scammers, Claire recalled how scammers had tricked her by pretending to be her bank Santander.
At the time of the scam, Claire was seven months pregnant and was working full time.
She had just got home from work when she received a text message claiming that there had been fraudulent activity on her Santander bank account.
Claire then called the number listed on the text message thinking that she could resolve it quickly as she was rushing to a baby event that evening.
She got through to what she thought was the fraud team who Claire described as being “professional and helpful”.
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As she was driving, just after she ended the phone call, she began to doubt herself and pulled over to check her online account.
She then realised that scammers had accessed her bank account and were spending thousands every few minutes, with payments of £5,000 and £10,000 coming out each time Claire refreshed the app.
Claire said: “The horror of seeing that money leave my account, I was screaming at my phone and the panic of trying to fumble with my phone to find the number for Santander's fraud team, I needed to stop it now.”
She pleaded with Santander to close the account as there were hackers in there – but she was too late.
Overall, the fraudsters managed to take Claire’s savings of £71,700 which she had received as an inheritance from her father when he recently passed away.
To make matters even worse, Claire was told by Santander that she had acted in “gross negligence” and they refused to pay back the money that was stolen from her.
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After fighting her case, Santander eventually repaid the money that was stolen.
“I had a bottle of champagne in the fridge, ready and waiting," said Claire, before adding: "The day the money was put back in my bank account, I opened it and had a very nice glass."
Dirty Rotten Scammers is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.
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