An article published on BBC’s website has revealed that approximately 10,000 of Booking.com customers’ personal information was stolen and used by criminals operating fake Call Centers to trick them into sending advance payments for hotel reservations, by asking for bank details. It is alleged that foreign visitors coming to London from countries like India, Bangladesh, Israel, South Africa, China and Japan are mainly targeted.
Booking.com says it is working with the police to tackle the problem and prevent the same phishing attack from happening again. They have refunded all the victims of the phishing scam.
How the Booking.com Phishing Scam Works?
- The personal information for Booking.com’s customers is obtained illegal or stolen.
- People around the world are hired on the internet as Call Center operators and are given access to the stolen personal details of Booking.com customers from around the world via their computers. The Call Center operators do not know that they are working for a fraudulent company, which is ripping off Booking.com customers.
- The people who are hired are ask to call the Booking.com customers, tell them that they calling from the hotel they(customers) have booked and they will receive an email, and if they have any questions they should get in touch with them (Call Center operators).
- The email message that the Booking.com customer will receive, will ask for advance payment for the hotel booking and bank details. Remember this has nothing to do with Booking.com.
- Once the customers check in, they will realize that the hotel has no record of the payment that they have made.
How to Avoid the Booking.com Phishing Scam?
If you are asked to send payment, personal or financial information via an email message or a phone call, please locate Booking.com phone number and call them directly or use their website at www.booking.com to contact them and verify the information that you have received.
Click here for more information about this phishing scam on the BBC’s website.