Tax Fraud Scams | PDSC Advice Guides

It’s that time of year when businesses submit their Tax and request rebates. Fraudsters will tailor their scams to these annual procedures to manipulate you into paying a penalty; alternatively, they might entice you into a rebate to get your personal and financial information.

HMRC will never request a penalty payment or offer a Tax refund through any form of electronic communication. Take a minute and pause when receiving any email, text or call and question the request/offer, it could be a tax fraud scam.

You can find genuine contact information here: https://www.gov.uk/contact

To identify fraudulent Tax requests:

01
Look for a sense of urgency, threat or enticement/offer.
02
Hover over the link to reveal the true website path. The reputable website is https://www.gov.uk anything different to this is a scam. To trick you into thinking it’s the “real deal”, they might make small changes such as gov.co.uk, gov.org, gov.com, g0v.uk for example
03
Check if the email/text is generic. It might say “Dear Customer” or not address anyone at all.
04
Lookout for spelling and grammatical errors.
05
Examine the quality of the logo, a fake email is likely to use a low-quality image.
06
Check whether the body of the email is contained within an image. This might contain malware or have a malicious link embedded.
07
Check the sender email address. At first glance it might look to be from the Government but after investigation you can reveal it is not a genuine sender.
08
Call and double check the request if you have any concerns.
09
Question a caller to confirm they are who they claim to be. Keep in mind, prolonged conversation to the fraudster can cost money

Actions if you think it’s a scam:

01
Hang up the phone and call HMRC on a genuine number.
02
Never open an attachment from an unexpected source as it can contain malware. Scan all attachments with AntiVirus/AntiMalware tools
03
Don’t click the link. If you do click the link don’t panic but report it to your line manager.
04
Report fraudulent emails, texts and calls to:
05
After reporting and following internal procedures, delete the fake emails and texts and block fraudulent numbers.
Tax Fraud Scam