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Scam warning: Woman devastated after losing her £40,000 inheritance in common scam | Personal Finance | Finance


Data breaches are on the rise meaning email hacks have gotten increasingly common as scammers are capable of obtain passwords and emails of innocent victims. On BBC’s Dirty Rotten Scammers this morning, show-jumping coach Zara explained the devastating impact that these scammers had on her life.

In September 2018 she was waiting for inheritance money to be paid into her account by the solicitors coping with the probate.

She had given the solicitors her bank details in person in addition to over email several times.

She was told the cash had been transferred into her account nonetheless when going to make a purchase order in the future, her card had been declined.

Confused by this, she went to go to her bank who confirmed to her that there was no money in her account.

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Zara contacted the solicitors to search out out what had happened as she needed the cash to continue to exist. Once they showed her the account details they’d sent the cash to, she realised it was not hers.

She had no idea how the solicitors could have paid the cash into the flawed account when she had emailed her correct details to them over and over.

Nonetheless after going through her email inbox, she had seen an email that she had not sent to the solicitors. The last email the solicitors received, supposedly from Zara, had a unique account number for the cash to be sent to.

The fake email meant that the scammers had deceived the solicitors into transferring Zara’s £42,000 into their account as an alternative.


These criminals were capable of get hold on Zara’s password to have taken control of her email.

Oz Alashe, CEO & Founder at CybSafe, said that “length beats complexity”.

For people attempting to strengthen their passwords to avoid hackers stepping into their accounts, he suggested that individuals select three random words and put them together.

The show’s team of ethical hackers were capable of discover that Zara’s data had been subject to an information breach.

They found that hackers were capable of steal her information from a system or an organization and so they do this with none authorisation. In lots of cases the corporate may not even know.

Zara said: “I’m actually horrified because I try hard to be very careful.

“I find it very disconcerting that individuals have been capable of discover things about me.

“Abused is an odd word, but I feel like I’ve been abused because someone has taken information that I’ve put out and so they’ve used it.

“It’s scary that individuals have this information.”

Dirty Rotten Scammers is offered on BBC iPlayer.

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