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News - 21 February 2013

WARNING: Don't get caught by tax rebate phishing scam

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have revealed that Taxpayers reported almost 80,000 tax rebate phishing emails last year.

A new wave of such e-mails is expected, HMRC warns, as last year they took action to close down 522 illegal sites. These emails originated from a number of countries including the United States of America, Russia and Japan, as well as central and Eastern Europe.

The emails promise a tax refund in exchange for personal, credit card or banking details.

However, people who respond risk opening their account to fraud and having details sold on to organised criminal gangs. Emails often link to a clone of HMRC’s genuine website to trick unsuspecting taxpayers into handing over their details, but HMRC never sends emails about a genuine tax rebate.
 

The scam email often begins with a sentence such as ‘we have reviewed your tax return according to our calculations of your last years accounts a tax refund of XXXX is due.’ Typical details requested in these emails include – name, address, date of birth, bank account number, sort code, credit card details, national insurance number, passwords and mother’s maiden name.
 

Stuart Coleman, Manager of the Tax Department of ABDS comments:
“HMRC does not email customers about tax refunds - they only ever contact customers who are genuinely due tax back by post. If you do receive a suspicious e-mail, do not click on websites or links contained within it or open attachments. Forward it immediately to phishing@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

If you are unsure and need any help and advice on Self Assessment or want the burden taken off your hands, contact the ABDS Tax Department Now.

ABDS Chartered Certified Accountants of Southampton.
Tel: 023 8083 6900  E-mail: abds@netaccountants.net

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