HMRC are once again alerting taxpayers to a surge of fake ‘phishing’ emails sent out by fraudsters in the run-up to the tax credits renewal deadline.
The email informs the recipient they are due a tax rebate and provides a click-through link to a cloned replica of the HMRC website. The recipient is asked to provide their credit or debit card details. Fraudsters then try to take money from the account using the details provided.
Since the beginning of April 2011, when the first tax credits renewals forms were sent out to claimants, more than 46,000 phishing emails have been reported. During the same period of time HMRC helped shut down more than 150 scam websites.
Joan Wood, Director of HMRC Online and Digital, said:
‘We currently only ever contact customers who are due a tax refund in writing by post. We don’t use telephone calls, emails or external companies in these circumstances. If anyone receives an email claiming to be from HMRC, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org before deleting it permanently.’
HMRC strongly advises taxpayers to:
Posted – 19/07/2011