HMRC Tax Refund Scam Hits Pembrokeshire
Taxpayers in Pembrokeshire County Council (Welsh, Wales, UK) have been urged by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to be cautious of a latest e-mail scam.
Details of the scam reveal that the County Officers have received phone calls from several public members who have got a scam e-mail informing them that they are eligible for a tax refund.
Then the recipients are provided an online form, wherein they are asked to provide their credit card or bank details so as to facilitate the payment of tax rebate.
Nigel Watts, Council's Trading Standards Manager, stated that when confirmed with HMRC, the e-mail was found to be fraudulent, as per the news published by westerntelegraph.co.uk on March 19, 2010.
Watts added that providing asked information would lead to the misuse of credit cards to the maximum possible extent. Victim's bank account could also be emptied. There could also be risks on account of personal details being sold to other organized criminal gangs.
Meanwhile, spokeswoman for HMRC stated that they contact customers eligible for such a refund only by means of post, reported nwemail.co.uk on March 22, 2010. She said that they never use e-mails while communicating with taxpayers. She urged recipients to forward that e-mail to HMRC for further investigations before getting rid of it. HMRC investigates such attacks in detail and collaborates with other law enforcement agencies in several countries including the UK.
The spokeswoman further disclosed that in 2009 various scam networks were taken down in different countries, particularly Mexico, the USA, Korea, Japan, Thailand, Austria, etc. She suggested users to log on to the official and authentic site of HMRC and check if the e-mail received by them is listed in the official site's security section.
Apart from this, users are highly advised not to click on links given in unsolicited e-mails or click-open attachments in such e-mails. They are also advised to continuously check their accounts for any suspicious transaction by scammers. Finally, users should ensure the safety and security of their PCs by installing up-to-date security software.
Related article: HMRC - Fake Refund E-mails Tricking Tax Payers
» SPAMfighter News - 3/30/2010
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