Beware of phishing or scam emails from criminal gangs
Published: 23 July 2009 By MoneyhighStreet Staff Leave a Comment
HMRC are warning that criminal gangs using phishing or scam emails are targeting taxpayers with bogus tax refunds – beware these fraudsters are only trying to get your personal information.
The phishing emails advise that a tax refund is due and ask for the recipient’s bank or credit card so that it can be paid.
But the criminal is simply trying to get your personal information so that they can access your bank account and credit card details for their own use – empty the bank account, use the credit card etc.
The criminal may also sell on your personal details to others.
HMRC Chief executive, Lesley Strathie, says ‘We only ever contact customers who are due a refund in writing by post. We never use emails, telephone calls or external companies in these circumstances.
I would strongly encourage anyone receiving such an email to immediately send it to us for investigation and delete it from their computer.’
The phishing email often starts ‘Following a review of your fiscal activity you are due a refund of tax of £xxx.’
Critically do not visit the website stated within the phishing email and don’t give any of your personal information.
You can forward the email to HMRC at email@example.com and delete it from your computer / email account.
You can get a free credit report which includes information on activity on your credit account agreements with lenders and you can immediately see if there have been any unknown credit checks done or accounts opened.
If you believe you have been the victim of a phishing attack, you should report this to your bank and credit card issuer as soon as possible.