How do I know if a text from TV Licensing is genuine and not a scam?

Warning - Direct Debit text scam

A small number of our customers have received text messages which says there’s a problem with their Direct Debit. It asks them to set up a new payment plan or risk facing a £200 fine. The link in the text directs customers to a fake version of the official TV Licensing website which asks them to enter personal information and bank details.

If you receive a similar text message, please delete it. If you have already clicked the link, do not enter or submit any information. TV Licensing is investigating the source of this fraud.

If you have received a text message and are unsure if it’s from the official TV Licensing, the following advice may help you:

Did you sign up to TV Licensing’s text reminder service?

If not, the text you have received is not genuine. We will never text you unless we have your permission to do so.

Is the text out of the blue?

Has the text arrived at a very different time than usual? We only send texts between:

  • 8am and 7pm Monday to Friday
  • 8am and 6pm on Saturday.

We do not send texts on Sundays.

Check the sender

Our texts will always be from ‘TV Licensing’. The only exception is if you pay by payment card and receive a message about a missed payment with the option of replying YES to take payment from your card stored with TV Licensing. This message will be sent from 07786 200 611.

Check the links go to the TV Licensing website

You will only be asked to go to If you are not sure, go to the TV Licensing website directly by typing into your web browser.

Check the number we ask you to call

We only use these numbers:

  • 0300 555 0293 if you pay by payment card
  • 0300 790 6082 if you pay by Direct Debit
Does it ask for personal information?

Our texts will never ask you for any personal information such as credit or debit card numbers or your security code. We will never ask you to set up a payment plan by text message.

Payment via SMS is only ever against your registered credit/debit card and will therefore only require the word ‘YES’ to action the payment.

Are there any changes in style, spelling and grammar?

Are there any spelling mistakes, missing full stops or other grammatical errors?

Often scammers will take the real texts and amend them. Look out for changes in the wording used, especially if it seems too casual or familiar.

Need any further help or advice?

If you have any doubts if a text or call has come from us you can visit the TV Licensing website directly by typing into your web browser or you can use our other contact details.

We suggest the following websites which provide some useful information:

Find out more about email scams.

General information about TV Licensing is available in other languages: