Dutch bank help desk fraudster arrested

Middelburg, The Netherlands – After several months of investigating bank help desk fraud, a 25-year-old suspect was arrested on Tuesday 22 February 2022.

The cyber team of the Zeeland-West-Brabant police, The Netherlands, has been investigating money flows and other digital data since December 2021 after (at least) five impacted parties made a report. A suspect came into the picture. This man lives in Assen. He was arrested by the police in Groningen on Tuesday morning. The house where he stayed, and a house in Assen, were searched by the police. This was done under the supervision of a examining magistrate. During those searches, various goods, including data carriers, were seized.

The suspect will be questioned by detectives in the coming days. At the end of the week, the suspect will be brought before the examining magistrate. This determines whether the suspect should be detained longer.

A bank help desk fraudster proceeds as follows: Victims are contacted by telephone with the announcement that suspicious transactions are taking place in their bank accounts. The fake bank employee tells them to take immediate action. They are tricked into giving their private details to the so-called helpdesk employee by means of devious scams. This can happen because victims have to download the program ‘Anydesk’ on their computers. Through Anydesk, a scammer gains access to his victims’ computers. The fake bank helpdesk employee then funnels the victims’ money into ‘secure bank accounts’. In reality, the money is channeled into an account that the suspect can access. In this way, the fraudster comes into possession of the injured party’s money.

Pay close attention if you are approached by a so-called bank employee. Real bank employees never ask to download programs, or to give them your PIN code. So don’t fall for this! Most of the people approached by these types of scammers are older people. Our advice is therefore to warn older people in your area about this type of practice. If you do not trust a telephone call, it is important to hang up immediately and possibly approach your bank yourself and report what happened to you.

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