Northern Ireland

British Airways warning over phishing email

BA flight Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption British Airways said it had been contacted by a number of people who had received the fake email

British Airways has issued a warning about a fake 'phishing' email purporting to come from the airline.

On Monday, a County Down man received an email from confirming an order for a flight from London on Feb 26 with a price of £490.

The man had not booked any such flight. While no money was taken from him, he was asked to click on links to confirm the flight.

BA has warned the email is an attempt to get people's personal details.

The airline said it had been contacted by a number of customers on Monday who had received such an email.

BA said other examples of fake emails included:

  • Ones with a subject line like "it's time to check-in online" inviting the recipient to click a link to check in for a fictitious upcoming flight.
  • Asking people to pay a BTA tax ("Basic Travel Allowance"), TFA ("Travelling Fees Allowance"), or similar, to enable a friend to travel.
  • Contain unsolicited offers of employment with British Airways requiring the recipient to purchase a visa.
  • Claiming to be from British Airways World Cargo, advising the person that a parcel is awaiting collection and requesting bank details or additional payments via Western Union.
  • Congratulating the recipient on winning a cash prize in a competition you have not entered.
  • Offering tickets to sporting or music events claiming to come from a member of British Airways cabin crew.

The airline said the emails are not from British Airways, but are attempts to secure personal information or extort money from consumers.

"Legitimate emails from British Airways will contain your booking reference and the email will not have been sent from a web-based mail server such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc," BA said.

"In addition, British Airways will never request money payments through a third party or promise you any kind of cash prize."

"If any customers have any doubts about emails they have received, British Airways advises that they should not click on any links or download any files.

"If you or anyone else receives these emails, please forward suspected email scams to: and British Airways will investigate its authenticity and take appropriate action."

A Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment spokeswoman said they were aware of the scam but had not received any complaints.

"Legitimate businesses don't ask you to send sensitive information through insecure channels," she said.

"Always look carefully at the email address the message has been sent from, as they will often closely resemble a genuine email address, with perhaps one or two letters spelled differently."

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