Insurance Phishing Text

I am with MCE Insurance. Yesterday I received a text telling me that I had a missed payment and had been charged an additional fee for this. A link was provided to a number to call to pay what was owed.

It was a good text as it was 1. Spoofed so that it appeared on the end of legitimate texts that I have received from MCE. 2. The linked number was very similar to the legitimate numbers used by MCE or may indeed have been one they do use that had also been spoofed.

It was clearly a phishing attempt as I do not make payments of the amount specified, my account with MCE is not in arrears and the spacing / punctuation of the text wasn’t quite right.

I rang MCE (who confirmed there was no issue with my insurance) and the customer services agent also told me that he had spoken to someone yesterday who had had a similar text. I have emailed them with a screenshot of the text and also reported to NCSC phishing reporting service.

Just wanted to warn people as it is a pretty good attempt and I can imagine people busy and distracted or a bit less aware falling into the scammer’s trap.

The screenshot shows two legitimate texts and the phishing attempt on the end.

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Well spotted. Some of these phishing attempts are getting very convincing. It’s unfortunate but all messages, emails etc. should be thought of as fraudulent until proven otherwise these days. It’s very easy to be caught out, especially if it seems to makes sense in context of business you’ve been doing, and people do panic sometimes.

People should also ask themselves, how did these fraudsters know who I do business with, or anything about me personally? Often it’s all out there for the taking. Facebook and Google make billions out of knowing everything about you, and it’s all been provided voluntarily .All too often the information scammers need is there for the taking as well.

What everyone should do - use unique passwords that are hard to guess. Get a password manager so you don’t have to remember all your passwords. Periodically check haveibeenpwned.com to see if any of your accounts may have been compromised and change passwords immediately if they have.

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Guess that means they’ve got someone inside selling customer info to the crooks. Weren’t MCE the dodgy Gibraltar based company that cancelled everyone’s insurance a year or two ago?

That does happen, though I suspect a lot of that information can be pulled off the net. In this case they got MrsVisor’s repayment wrong so it may not have been an inside job.

MCE went in to administration in 2021. I presume someone bought the business afterwards but I don’t know the details.

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Mce are (were?) pretty dodgy themselves a while back as they were refusing to repair valid claims and generally arses to deal with.
Lots of problems with them and loads of bad reviews etc.
Sure, cheaper than most but when its time that you may need them…

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That would be consistent with the end result that they couldn’t afford to pay out for claims and went in to administration. Not necessarily ‘dodgy’ but certainly not running the business well, or with sufficient consideration of risk in the decisions they took.

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I was between a bit of a rock and a hard place for insurance this year; it has been a bit of a tale of woe and the reviews of “reborn” MCE and personal experience of someone were OK.

To cut a long story short, before purchasing the Street Triple I explored quotes - fine - quotes from most reputable major insurers in the £300 - £450 per year ballpark figure which I was happy with for a new rider.

After purchase my first year was just over £200 fully comp with loads of quotes for between £200 and £400 with reputable companies. Come renewal time I was forced to look for another insurer as my current one had decided to longer offer motorcycle insurance. This time, some companies declined to offer a quote and others were extortionate - in the region of £4000 some of them :astonished:. My renewal was almost double what my first year was in the end - all that had changed was an extra year’s claim - free riding and my job title was very slightly adjusted, but in reality I had just moved desks.

When I was going through the renewal process and asked why things had changed so much when I rang them the most common answer I was given was “the type of bike it is” and mutterings about a £6000 value threshold for insurance for less experienced riders from those who had declined to quote (all of whom had provided quotes for my first year with 0 NCB). No one could answer why the previous year this hadn’t seemed to be a factor…

Anyhow, MCE were about middle (not the cheapest option but the cheapest options were horrible) option for this year and, when this policy expires, I shall explore changing again. In terms of the excesses; for a cheap quote they are very high - so I pay slightly more premium and have reduced the excess to a reasonable amount.

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I am wondering whether there has been a data breach at MCE or a comparison site? I do have a FB account, but it does not have any personal info on it - not even my full real name, no photographs bar profile picture (not my face) and no friends. I simply use it to access a few groups on FB (where I also do not share personal info). I have to be pretty locked - down in terms of information I put “out there” for work so am generally careful.

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My first thought was that someone has hacked MCE’s customer database. This phishing attempt seems very targeted.

Getting sensible car and bike insurance quotes is one of the few advantages of getting old(er) :grinning:

It’s possible but there are many ways to gather information across the internet. My point about Facebook was more towards how many people (though not yourslef) are very free with their personal information. It’s also hugely valuable to know who your friends are, and friends of friends etc. Metada is hugely caluable. That’s why Facebook are happy to encrypt your messages - they still get value from knowing who you know, who you speak to, when, how often etc.

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My car insurance is great as I have been driving for almost 29 years…my bike insurance up until this renewal was also really good so hopefully I can get it back that way at next renewal :crossed_fingers:.

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Funny I made quite a large purchase online a few days ago, got an email from DPD the next day saying they had received the parcel. Shortly after that I got a text about extra fees due! The text was an obvious scam but the timing was impeccable! Coincidence, I think not.

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That was exactly my experience. 1st year, brand new bike, no no-claims, £240. 2nd year, nothing changed except bike and me a year older, and most places wouldn’t even give me a quote. Only managed to get two, $1800 and £850, so I ended up paying the latter :frowning:

It’s bonkers! The YBR 125 was really cheap to insure £79 / year, then when I had the Herald 125 the insurer I was with reckoned I was uninsurable on it :rofl: so I swapped to a different insurer for about £68 / year I think from memory. It all seems bonkers to me, makes very little sense.

News travels fast. You’ve obviously earned a reputation for being a young tearaway hooligan in a leather jacket. :wink: :rofl:

It could be coincidence. if they send out 1000 fake messages at least a few people who receive them will be waiting for actual DPD deliveries. On the other hand, a criminal gang may have managed to get a key logger installed on your device and know everything you’re typing… :wink:

I had a scam message arrive a couple of years ago that purported to be from Hermes (now Evri) and I was initially thinking it could be legitimate as I was waiting for something and I didn’t know which carrier would deliver it. That must have been a coincidence even though the timing was right.

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Same as a scam one I had a while ago purporting to be from a bank that I don’t have an account with. Or all of the Royal Mail extra charges for delivery etc etc. There are so many that it is frightening and it is so simple to spoof numbers and company names, fake entire text conversations, WhatsApp conversations etc that it is no surprise.

The attached screenshot though is entirely genuine, thank you :partying_face:.

Still waiting for the bloody money.