The Taxing Scammers

Posted by Paul Anderson Riley in Identity Theft on 1 November 2016 - Paul is a Credit Analyst at checkmyfile

Some people question paying taxes in the first place, so it’s no surprise that around 50,000 people a day are being targeted as a part of a tax refund scam in the UK. Personal details have been shared with scam artists pretending to be government officials claiming that a refund could be due.

This scam has been conducted via email, with a scammer mimicking domain names similar to that of the government. The domain has now been shut down. There are growing concerns around the UK’s ability to monitor cyber-attacks and scams, with current cyber defences coming under scrutiny. This reaffirms the need to be cautious when going through emails and unidentified correspondence.

Phillip Hammond has claimed that the UK is now working towards protecting itself against high-level attacks as he has now introduced a plan to strengthen the UK’s cyber security. The scheme will have £1.9bn funding and aims to tackle personal attacks for malicious purposes similar to when Twitter and PayPal were brought down in October.

Minister Ben Gummer says, “No longer the stuff of spy thrillers and action movies, cyber-attacks are a reality and they are happening now… Our adversaries are varied – organised criminal groups, 'hactivists', untrained teenagers and foreign states."

A global risk report by the World Economic Forum reveals that the current cost of cyber-crime to the globe is around £363bn (estimated). Online attacks and breaches are quickly becoming the biggest threats that modern day businesses and individuals have to deal with. Not only are the companies being targeted but the individual customer details of these companies are released in some attacks.

Public services are also at particular risk, as they will often hold large databases of personal data. A national crime unit has been promised 50 technical experts and investigators by the government and a look to educate and train even more.

If you believe that you have been the victim of a scam or have given personal details away to a scam artist unknowingly there a few basic steps you can take to monitor any unusual activities. Closely look at your bank and credit card statements to make sure you recognise all of the incoming and outgoing transactions. Any transactions you are unsure of contact the bank or credit provider and they will have a dedicated fraud team who will be able to look into this for you.

You could also check your credit report on a monthly basis to see what is being reported. Keeping an eye on the accounts in your name and the searches conducted will soon help you to notice if someone has been using your details to open agreements or apply for credit.

Finally, remain vigilant - do not release any personal details unless you are certain that the company contacting you are who they say they are. If you have any doubts about companies contacting you, do not give any personal details or click on any attachments if they are contacting you digitally.

Check Your Multi-Agency Credit Report

30 Day Free Trial

Tesco Online Grocery List Disappears

After well over 10 years of using Tesco’s online grocery service, all of sudden, all of my Tesco order history has disappeared, alongside all the information stored in My Favourites – purchases made in-store and online over the past 13 months, My Usuals, and My Shopping Lists.

Published on 9 Oct 2018 by Barry Stamp

Full Article

Are linked addresses on your credit file a bad thing

Your Credit Report can surprise you: it can include reference to an address you have long-forgotten about or sometimes even an address you have never heard of, which is one of the reasons it’s important to check in every now and then.

Published on 30 Jul 2018 by Ian Carpenter

Full Article

Loan Fee Fraud: The £3.5 Million a Year Scam

For people facing financial hardship, sometimes taking out a loan to tide things over can seem like the most viable solution. But if you’re out of work or have a lower-than-average credit rating, it can be harder to get credit from mainstream lenders and mean that more expensive forms of finance in the sub-prime market are the only viable option. It often feels like a hopeless situation.

Published on 8 Jun 2018 by Jamie Mackenzie Smith

Full Article

Protecting yourself against identity theft online

Modern day fraudsters are now able to use the internet as a helpful tool to acquire a vast amount of information about an individual just from using their name. From this, they start to build a portfolio of data that they can then use to obtain credit, bank accounts and sign up for other services. By following a few simple steps you can help to reduce the risk of being exposed to a fraudster online.

Published on 22 May 2018 by Paul Anderson Riley

Full Article

Personal Data in the Wake of Facebook/Cambridge Analytica

Strange as it might sound to some, huge numbers of people routinely complete online surveys through Facebook to find out which football player they are most like, which Hogwarts house they should be in or how much money they will be earning in 2050. The truth is, every time you volunteer seemingly innocuous information or consent to share profile information with an app, your data is probably going somewhere to be used for another purpose.

Published on 17 Apr 2018 by Paul Anderson-Riley

Full Article

Identity Fraud: What To Do If It Happens To You

Year on year, there has been a substantial rise in the number of identity fraud cases being reported to organisations such as Cifas, the UK’s fraud prevention service. It’s no real surprise when you consider the crime can be committed from the comfort of someone’s home without ever having to risk showing their face.

Published on 6 Feb 2018 by George Coburn

Full Article

What's a Politically Exposed Person (PEP) & Why is it on my Report?

PEP stands for Politically Exposed Person, which would typically relate to an individual who has a prominent public title or function. If you receive this classification, often you will have to undergo additional security checks when applying for finance. Your credit file will tell you if you have been identified as a PEP, however for most people it isn’t something they’ll need to worry about.

Published on 8 Jan 2018 by Paul Anderson-Riley

Full Article

Brits continuing to fall for HMRC and Apple gift card scam

At the face of it, it seems a bit odd that the company responsible for collecting taxes would request payment from individuals in the form of an Apple iTunes gift card, but according to Action Fraud, this scam has continued to be profitable for fraudsters. The scheme first came to light in May last year and Action Fraud have received hundreds of complaints since then.

Published on 30 Jan 2017 by George Coburn

Full Article

Yahoo’ve been hacked – Yahoo in largest ever reported data breach

In the last two years, we have already been alerted to data breaches at Three Mobile, Tesco Bank, TalkTalk, Morrison’s, Steam and Sage, amongst others. The scale of these hacker attacks have varied. But none have come close to the newest report.

Published on 16 Dec 2016 by Ben Tumilty

Full Article

Lloyds bank letter scam

Millions of consumers have been warned to be vigilant and question written correspondence from their banks following a sophisticated scam which has targeted customers of Lloyds Bank.

Published on 12 Dec 2016 by Kirstie Brown

Full Article
keyboard_arrow_left

keyboard_arrow_right

We are rated number 1 for customer service on