HMRC blocks 4,000 phishing sites to protect taxpayers

15 December 2014

A Government report on cyber security singles out HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for the positive steps it has taken to protect its customers.

The Cabinet Office report focuses both on future plans and on achievements to date across Government.

It includes praise for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) for the design of its digital programme. But it is the work of HMRC to deter cyber attacks which attracts most recognition. HMRC is reported to have closed down 4,000 illegal websites and responded to 75,000 phishing reports as part of its pro-active technical measures to protect taxpayers from online fraud. HMRC says it has secured web domains that could be used by criminals to send fraudulent emails to customers for the purposes of delivering malware or stealing personal information. More than 94% of all fraudulent emails spoofing HMRC web domains are now being deleted by internet service providers (ISPs), preventing delivery to customers’ mailboxes, according to HMRC.