Fraudsters have been targeting parents of independent schools for a while. However recently the scam has changed from an email informing you of a change in account details for your termly payment to an attention-grabbing reduction in fees for early payment, curiously enough to a new account. These frauds come under Authorised Push Payments and in 2017 UK banks saw £236 million of them, and only one in 3 were fully reimbursed.
WHENEVER A PARTY YOU PAY REGULARLY ASKS YOU TO CHANGE THE ACCOUNT YOU PAY, CALL THEM INDEPENDENTLY TO VERIFY
SIMILARLY FOR ANY LARGE PAYMENT ALWAYS MAKE SURE YOU ARE PAYING THE CORRECT PARTY
Tips and Advice
- Who sent it? – Check the sender’s address, although occasionally schools email systems are hacked, and it comes from the correct address, more often fraudsters set up a similar legitimate looking address.
- Call the school! – As with any party who asks to change payment instructions, call the school with an independently sourced telephone number, not the one on the email!
- Report it! – If you receive an email, text or call which you believe to be false, please inform the school so they can warn others.
- Contact – your bank or credit card company if you have already given out financial details.
- ID Protection – If you’re worried about identity fraud and would like to protect your identity contact CIFAS
- Still Unsure? – Call Reassura 0800 888 6400 and one of our fraud advisor’s will help you to stay safe.
Reassura is dedicated to helping raise awareness of scams and fraud along with the impact they have on their victims. Reassura’s team of specialist anti-fraud advisors are here to help members make better decisions and avoid falling victim to scams and fraud.
For further information or for advice and assistance regarding any potential scam, call Reassura on 0800 888 6400