HMRC WARN - DON'T GET CAUGHT BY EMAIL SCAMS
19 February 2013
HMRC have issued a warning against getting caught out by phishing emails offering tax rebates.
There were almost 80,000 of these emails reported last year and HMRC are keen to warn tax payers that they are not genuine however realistic they at first appear to be.
During 2012 HMRC took action to close down 522 illegal sites, which showed these emails originated from a number of countries including the United States of America, Russia and Japan, as well as central and eastern Europe.
Gareth Lloyd, Head of Digital Security for HMRC said:
“HMRC does not email customers about tax refunds - we only ever contact customers who are genuinely due tax back in writing, by post.
“If anyone receives an email offering a tax rebate and claiming to be from HMRC, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org before deleting it permanently. HMRC does everything it can to ensure customers are safe online and we are working closely with other law enforcement agencies to target the criminals behind this serious crime.”
To help customers stay safe online, HMRC strongly advises customers to:
- Check the advice published at www.hmrc.gov.uk/security/index.htm where they can see if the email received is listed
- Forward suspicious emails to HMRC at email@example.com and then delete it from your computer/mail account
- Do not click on websites or links contained in suspicious emails or open attachments
- Follow advice from www.getsafeonline.co.uk
- Anyone who has answered one of these emails should forward the email and disclosed details to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have reason to believe that you have been the victim of an email scam, report the matter to your bank/card issuer as soon as possible. If in doubt please check with HMRC at HMRC fraud attempts