HMRC have reported a surge of fake ‘phishing’ emails following the 31 January 2011 Self Assessment tax return filing deadline.
The email advises the taxpayer that they are due a tax rebate and contains a link to a replica of the HMRC website. The taxpayer will then be asked to provide their credit card details. The ‘fraudsters’ will then try to take money from the account and taxpayers risk having their bank accounts emptied and / or their personal details sold on to other organised criminal gangs.
HMRC advise that in the last three months they have shut down 99 websites that were responsible for sending out the fake tax rebate emails.
Chris Hopson, Director of Customer Contact at HMRC, said:
‘As a matter of policy, HMRC will only ever contact customers who are due a tax refund in writing by post. If anyone receives an email offering a tax rebate claiming to be from HMRC, we recommend they send it to firstname.lastname@example.org before deleting it permanently.’
Internet link: News release
Posted – 25/03/2011