Questions of cash: Beware fake emails that demand money


Q. Ever since typing my name into Google out of idle curiosity, I have been receiving emails from it demanding money or it will stop my ads. I do not have any ads, but its emails are non-reply and attempts to contact it are ignored. When I am abroad, accessing these emails costs me money. Help! SP, Guildford



A. Don't blame Google – it is even more annoyed than you are. It has nothing to do with having typed your name into its search engine – that is just a coincidence. This is yet another phishing scam designed to extract money or personal information from innocent internet users. You should ignore the emails and perhaps review your email-protection software, which appears not to be blocking spam mail. Google says the sender of these emails appears to be based in China and it is attempting to take legal action to put an end to its activities.



Q. Our son went travelling in South America, where in December his bag containing cameras, passport and bank cards was snatched at a bus station. He phoned us and we contacted banks, card companies and the mobile-phone provider. He has accounts with HSBC, NatWest and Barclays. Both HSBC and NatWest sent new cards to him via our home address. But Barclaycard insisted he phone them from South America. He tried repeatedly to do this, but even though he spent £35 on calls he was unable to get through to people who could sort his problem out. Barclaycard refused to send his card to our address as apparently it has our postal code recorded wrongly on its records – which was one of the reasons our son was unable to solve the problem when he phoned it – and it has no trace of him having lived here. PS, Buckinghamshire

A. Barclaycard says that having reviewed the tapes of calls between your son and Barclaycard, its staff could have handled his calls "in a more professional and helpful manner". Initially it credited your son's account with £35 as a goodwill gesture. We felt this was insufficient and asked Barclaycard to review this as it merely repaid the cost of your son's calls from South America. It has now agreed to credit his account with a further £50 in recognition of its poor handling of his calls.



Q. Earlier this year, high winds damaged the pebbledashing on my property, some of which fell through my neighbour's plastic carport roof. Both properties are covered by the same Norwich Union insurance policy. Norwich Union has been very slow in responding to the claim, even though we have provided the requested two written quotes from different tradesmen. The claims assessor concluded that while the damage was the result of the storm and high winds, only the carport damage would be covered by the insurance policy. Norwich Union will pay for the damage that will cost about £50 to repair, while rejecting the claim for damage of about £1,000. We pay more than £400 a year on insurance to Norwich Union. AM, Nottingham



A. A Norwich Union spokesman says its assessor concluded: "Despite the fact there had been storm conditions in the area, the pebbledashing had fallen off the walls because of general wear-and-tear problems and not because of any adverse weather conditions. We wouldn't expect high winds to affect pebbledashing that is in good condition and it seems the damage has only highlighted an ongoing maintenance issue." Your policy does not cover damage caused by wear and tear. You are unhappy with this response and can take the matter further by requesting the Financial Ombudsman Service to review the matter, but Norwich Union seems to be on safe legal ground.

Independent Partners; Do you need financial advice on your investments, pension or insurance? Book a free consultation with an independent Financial Adviser at VouchedFor.co.uk

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
This weekend's 'Big Hero 6' by Disney Animation Studios
arts + ents
News
i100
News
Budapest, 1989. Sleepware and panties.
newsDavid Hlynsky's images of Soviet Union shop windows shine a light on our consumerist culture
Arts and Entertainment
Eleanor Catton has hit back after being accused of 'treachery' for criticising the government.
books
News
In humans, the ability to regulate the expression of genes through thoughts alone could open up an entirely new avenue for medicine.
science
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Recruitment Genius: Software Development Manager

    £40000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Ashdown Group: Product Manager - (Product Marketing, Financial Services)

    £30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...

    Recruitment Genius: Compliance Assistant

    £13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...

    Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive

    £23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...

    Day In a Page

    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee