A cautionary tale of scams, Sky and spoof caller IDs

A spoof caller, earlier today

Here's an interesting situation for all you aspiring private dicks, of which we believe there are many. Despite being on the TPS register, avid Bitterwallet reader Paul received a cold call from a call centre earlier in the week:

The company claimed to be Sky - they were trying to sell my wife some sort of extended warranty for Sky boxes and the internal and external cabling. We said we were interested and they asked for our address - the alarms bells rang because Sky already has it.

They then asked for our bank details, and we told them if they really were Sky, they wouldn't be asking for details they already had. They hung up shortly afterwards.

We've been Sky customers for six years or so, so these people knew that or they took a guess, and it's the first time we've ever had a call about insuring the cables?

Who Calls Me doesn't have any records of scam phonecalls from the number used -  0191 1273 384 548 - and it's perhaps no wonder, because it hardly look like a standard phone number. There are certainly too many digits for a number originating in North East England (0191 is the dialing code for Newcastle, Sunderland and Durham) or even an international number.

So while this is another warning about shady callers out there (assuming it's not Sky themselves), it's also perhaps a telltale sign of spoof caller ID services.

These services, which allow the user to appear to be calling from another number (or even mimic an existing one) exist in the US but not in this country - those that have tried to set up in the UK have been shut down by Ofcom.


  • piggy
    little shits!
  • Alex
    Sky insurance has always seemed like a waste of time to me, if you give sky the choice of losing a customer or repairing your box. They'll come and repair/replace your box.
  • Michael
    These bastards try this on with me all the time. Anyone phoning from sky, claiming to be Sky, is usually NOT Sky. Hang up, or tell them to fuck off and THEN hang up.
  • Zleet
    I've had dozens of these and you can always tell as the fake Indian call-centre person can barely speak English and has a really strong accent so probably hasn't had the training (in english and enunciation) the legit Indian call-centres give. A friend had one and initially believed them when they said they were from BT internet but grew suspicious when they started referring to themselves as Microsoft.
  • domestic&General=shit
    There not these bullshit Indian call centres. These guys are all based in the UK, there are dozens of them around. Sky obviously sell there shitty data on to other companies (or someone in sky does anyway). Theses companies ask for a one off payment upfront from the customer to lock them down. most are genuine and will provide you with the service. Some take your money and run. Extended warranties for Sky boxes...FUCK that. Sky do there own warranties thru a company called Domestic & General based in Brighton, £100 for 12 months...they can fuck off as well,Dodgy cunts.
  • MyOtherUserNameIsAFerrari
    I used to get calls like this all the time, then one day when i wasnt too busy i sat down and kept the guy on he line for nearly a full hour, just asking questions and talking crap to him. I wasnt abusive or anything, but he ended up getting his supervisor on the phone because he said I was wasting his time, even though HE called me! Anyway, they never called back after that!
  • Bob
    One of these scammers tried telling my wife they'd cut my Sky off if I didn't take out the Sky warranty..!!! Needless to say, She believed them, I told them where to stick it, Lol.
  • Slacker
    "Extended warranties for Sky boxes…FUCK that." Indeed, you can buy the things on eBay for peanuts these days.
  • Steve
    Had this exact same phone call. Told em to do one.
  • xander n.
    Could be this company operating from my town. http://www.satelliterepairservices.com/
  • Pat
    Watch out for 2 dodgy companies in Bournemouth trying to rip off pensioners
  • Mrposh56
    I work for Sky, and have heard of this isssue There are steps GENUINE callers can and do to establish legitamcy Sky warranties from D&G cost from £5.00 per month

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