‘I didn’t even know where Guinea Bissau was’ - Hornchurch ‘fraud’ victim charged hundreds for calls to west Africa
14:27 11 July 2014
A bemused homeowner was told he could not ring from his landline due to a high number of calls being made through the night to west Africa.
Steve Roome, of Lodge Court in High Street, Hornchurch, fears he is the victim of a phone hacking scam called “teeing” and is urging neighbours to check their bills for calls to Guinea Bissau.
The father-of-two rang EE on Saturday after experiencing problems when dialling out.
Staff explained the high usage team had put a block on his line after almost £400 worth of calls had been made to the country.
“I am white English originating from Yorkshire and have no family in Africa,” explained Steve. “I didn’t even know where Guinea Bissau was.
“Needless to say I or my family have not made any calls, and we were at home when they were made.”
After being told he would have to wait two days to speak to the high usage team, he decided to check his online bill.
He said: “It listed apparent calls to Guinea Bissau starting at 10.10pm on Friday night every six minutes to five different numbers rolling.
“The last call was at 5.20am on Saturday. My normal monthly broadband and phone bill is about £40 and these alone totalled £385.60!”
Steve discovered a news story from South Woodford in May where multiple households in one street claimed to be victims of a similar type of fraud.
“It’s called teeing,” said Steve. “They do it from the green phone boxes in the street. It must be someone who really knows what they are doing. I just want people to be on the lookout.
“EE say they are going to look into it but don’t seem to have anyone who handles this type of thing.
“I am worried that it will affect my credit rating while this gets resolved.”
A spokesman for EE said they were investigating the incident as a matter of urgency.