Fraudsters clone HMRC phone numbers to legitimize scams & # 39; & # 39; and brighten up people's money
Fraudsters clone Her Majesty's receipts and customs contact numbers to dispose of scam attempts as & # 39; legitimate & # 39; that it has warned.
The goal is to steal thousands of pounds from unsuspecting victims who go on believing – and This is Money has received examples of this.
Criminals call potential victims with Voice over Internet Protocol technologies to copy the tax number (usually 0300 200 3300) and to abandon themselves brutally as HMRC employees conducting audits and tracking tax evaders.
Readers have written that this money is to tell how they have lost thousands of pounds to criminals claiming to call from the HMRC
They tell their target that they have not paid their taxes in previous years and that they have an immediate transfer of the & # 39; outstanding & # 39; funds, or the risk of legal action and imprisonment.
Some smartphones even indicate that the song comes from the HMRC making the scams more credible for people who then transfer money to criminals for fear.
If the victim is not at home or does not answer the phone, the scammers are not deterred.
They often leave voice messages or send e-mails with the claim that they come from the HMRC and demand immediate call-back requests.
A HMRC spokesperson told This is Money: We are well aware that fraudsters are trying to falsify our actual figures to legitimize their crimes. We encourage people to be vigilant, as with other scams.
& # 39; We will never just call you to ask for money. If in doubt, you can put the phone down and call us back.
& # 39; You can report this scam at firstname.lastname@example.org or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040. All our phone numbers are on gov.uk if people want to call us. & # 39;
HSBC: The bank says that scammers are expert-manipulators and use a series of techniques to find and use public and private information about their victims
Reports of an increase in tax number clones comes after our report last week in which a mother lost two £ 2,900 of her HSBC savings,
It came after a swindler persuaded her that he called from the HMRC and threatened her with legal action and arrests.
Another Surrey reader wrote shortly after our report a similar story about how his wife was the target of & # 39; HMRC & # 39; fraudsters and lost more than £ 2,400.
Defeat the scammers
In 2016, This is Money launched the Beat the Scammers section in an attempt to help readers stay ahead of the latest fraud trends.
This HMRC prison scam is yet another example of how criminals adjust and try to play on fear of deceiving people from their hard-earned money.
Do you have a story? Contact: email@example.com
They also banks with HSBC.
He said: "My wife has just been involved in exactly the same scam last week and some of the agreements are really frightening.
& # 39; I finished last week and have come home to cry my wife and daughter both.
He added: "My wife was on the phone and refused to tell me what was going on except that she was being investigated for tax evasion by HMRC, and that she was being followed and that she could not speak to anyone else about the case if it would break the terms of their agreement.
I finally managed to convince her that this could not be real, but at that moment the damage had already been done.
& # 39; They had kept her on the phone to make sure that the payment she had made (£ 2,486) had gone ahead earlier. & # 39;
A spokesman for HSBC UK said: "Scammers are expert-manipulators and use a range of techniques to find and use public and private information about their victims, both before and during contact with them, without realizing it. .
My wife was on the phone and refused to tell me what was going on except that she was being investigated for tax evasion by HMRC.
Then they use this information in different scenarios to convince people that a bank transfer is necessary and that they seem plausible and legitimate.
& # 39; In this case, there is nothing to indicate that the scammer already had access to specific financial information about the customer.
& # 39; After we were notified of the scam, we quickly took action to contact the receiving bank, informing him of the transaction in question and the suspected fraudulent activity.
& # 39; It is then up to the receiving bank to investigate money and return it to the customer. & # 39;
Number falsification is a fairly simple technique for fraudsters. They clone the phone number of an organization that they want to imitate and ensure that it is displayed on the caller ID display that the intended victim sees.
Websites that offer this type of service are easy to find.
The scammer gains confidence by drawing attention to the number on the display and uses this as proof of identity to conceal the fraud.
Many may not realize how easy it is for a fraudster to have a telephone number of a bank or government organization appear.
HMRC tips for identifying a scam
· Recognize the signals – real organizations such as banks and HMRC will never contact you directly to request your PIN, password or bank details.
· Stay safe – do not share private information, do not reply to text messages, download attachments or click on links in emails you did not expect.
· Take action – send suspicious e-mails with the claim that they go from HMRC to firstname.lastname@example.org and the texts to 60599 or contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 to report suspicious calls or online fraud reporting program.
· HMRC debt management teams contact members of the public by phone about paying outstanding debts.
· If a customer is not sure that the call is from HMRC, he will be asked to call back. Depending on the circumstances and to give the customer confidence, it is in reality HMRC calling, information can be made known to the caller only HMRC is a party to.
· Calls from the majority of HMRC offices will leave caller identification data, i.e. the number that the caller used to contact you.
· Go to GOV.UK for up-to-date advice on HMRC calls on scams.
· HMRC calls people on outstanding tax accounts and sometimes uses automated messages, but this also applies to the reference number of your taxpayer. If you are not sure whether the caller hangs up and calls directly to HMRC to check – you can confirm our call center numbers on GOV.UK if you are unsure. For tax reductions, your data is not included in voicemail messages.