Cybercriminals use HMRC Tax Blunder as Phishing Opportunity

In the wake of the recent HMRC tax blunder, HMRC are warning people living in the UK about the threat of online scammers.

A huge amount of phishing emails are doing the rounds and all seem to be from legitimate email addresses. These include addresses like refunds@hmrc.gov.uk, info@hmrc.gov.uk, attached.form@hmrc.attached.gov.uk, noreply@notifications.gov.uk and customers@hmrc.gov.uk. The emails look the part and are written in a way that make them sound real too. The emails then attempt to get the recipient to fill out forms which require personal information including bank accounts, credit cards and passwords.

In many instances, the emails use scare tactics, claiming that the reader might find themselves in trouble with Inland Revenue if they don’t update their personal information or in some cases, pay over a sum of money, due to “underpaid tax” .

There have also been reports of phishing phone calls, where callers claim to be from HMRC, needing urgent information in order to repay overpaid tax.

HMRC has stated they will never ask for personal information in an email; nor will they notify tax payers of over- or under-payment via email or telephonethese notices will be sent out via post only.

If you receive an email claiming to be from HMRC, do not click on any links as these could lead you to malicious websites or open a virus. Rather forward the email to phishing@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk immediately.

Visit http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/security/examples.htm for examples of all the fraudulent emails to watch out for.

If you need advice on your tax situation or would like to apply for your tax refund, visit www.1stcontact-taxrefunds.com or call 0808 141 5503 and speak to a friendly and professional tax refund consultant.

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