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Friday
Oct162009

Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC

Taxpayers and businesses are the target of scam emails offering tax refunds, said HM Revenue and Customs.

HMRC received almost 85,000 complaints from taxpayers who had received one or more of these emails in September. The number is expected to rise for October as on one day alone 10,000 tax ‘phishing’ email reports were made to the taxman.

Now, HMRC is warning that no emails are sent to taxpayers and any message received is likely to be a scam and should not be opened, nor should any personal details be sent over the internet in reply to an email allegedly from the taxman.

Many of the emails read: "Following a review of your fiscal activity you are due a refund of tax of £x." 

HMRC customer contact head John Harrison said that the messages were designed to trick people in to handing over credit card and bank account details. 

This could leave them at risk of having savings stolen and the details sold on to professional criminal gangs, in so-called "sucker lists". 

The emails are sent from lots of different web sites that stay open for 20 minutes before changing to another domain.

"We only contact customers who are due a refund in writing by post. We never use e-mails, telephone calls or external companies in these circumstances," Mr Harrison said. 

He urged people not to click on linked websites on these scam e-mails, but to report these e-mails and delete them. 

Various scams under the HMRC circulate internet including emails claiming VAT and tax rebates.

Losses from all scams in the UK are estimated to total £3.5 billion a year. The Office of Fair Trading estimates that 3.2 million people fall victim to scams each year.

 



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References (14)

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  • Response
    Response: Phil St Ores
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: Imperial Advance
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: Imperial Advance
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: imperial advance
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: imperial advance
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: Robert Butchike
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: Eric Gonchar
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Response: Eric Gonchar
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London
  • Response
    Tax rebate emails are scams, warns HMRC - Tax, Legal & Business News from London - St Matthew Accountants London

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