“Tis the season to be jolly careful” the PM said yesterday and with everyone’s self-assessment deadline looming and a big spike in HMRC scams its truer than ever. There is a plague of fake emails, text messages and phone calls doing the rounds. Many of us would normally ignore such messages but with that nagging thought in the back of your head about having to complete the self-assessment it’s easy to click on a link and handover valuable personal information. In the 12 months to September the HMRC responded to 242,494 reports of phone scams, which was a 24% increase on the previous year.
THE HMRC WILL WRITE TO YOU FOR ANY URGENT ISSUES- IGNORE ANY PHONE CALLS, TEXTS OR EMAILS CLAIMING TO BE FROM THEM
Tips and Advice
- Only real with your Tax Code – HMRC will always use your ‘tax code reference number’ in an automated voicemail message or phone call to you
- Keep it to yourself – HMRC will not request personal or financial information in any form other than by letter
- Don’t – be pressured into acting quickly, this is a ‘red flag’ and sign of a scam
- Call them to check – the HMRC helpline is 0300 200 3300, have your National Insurance Number ready when you call
- Report – you can report suspicious emails claiming to be from HMRC to firstname.lastname@example.org and texts to 60599. Be sure to make a note of the date of the phone call, the phone number and the content of the phone call.
- Contact – your bank or credit card company if you have already given out financial details
- Still Unsure? – Call Reassura 0800 888 6400 and one of our fraud advisors will help you to stay safe
- To report a fraud – and receive a police crime reference number call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or use their online fraud reporting tool
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