Fraudsters are impersonating major companies and organisations in a telephone scam to steal money from online bank accounts, consumers have been warned.
Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK) said criminals are using technology to take control of victims' computers from remote locations after phoning them and offering to help with a slow computer or internet connection.
FFA UK said there had been a recent increase in report of this type of scam.
%VIRTUAL-ArticleSidebar-scams-guide%Scammers were impersonating internet service providers, computer companies, banks, software firms and law enforcement or claiming to be calling as a result of recent high-profile data breaches before saying there was a problem with the victim's computer or internet service.
They then ask for remote access to the computer to fix the problem, offer to pay compensation and ask the victim to log into their bank account to check it has arrived.
However, they take money from the account or transfer money between accounts to make it look like a payment has been made.
FFA UK warned consumers to be wary of unsolicited approaches by phone claiming to offer a refund and to never log onto an internet bank while someone has access to the computer.
FFA UK director Katy Worobec said: "You should never let someone else have access to your computer remotely, especially if they have contacted you via an unsolicited phone call.
"If you are in doubt, then call the organisation back on a number you trust. If they are legitimate, they will understand.
"Do not share your bank account details with anyone and make sure any computer you use to log onto your internet banking is secure."
In a previous scam, fraudsters used a similar approach to gain access to people's computers under the guise of carrying out repairs before demanding money as payment.