HMRC, formally known as Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, is a well-known and familiar organisation which many people may have to correspond with on occasion. It particularly helps Britons deal with taxes and other official payments they may need to make throughout the year. However, scammers are capitalising on the official name of HMRC to dupe people into parting with sensitive information.
“To ‘prove’ they are real, you get directed to the official HMRC site and they ask you to check your phone for the number.
“It does show as the HMRC number – watch yourselves.”
Another said: “Appears the telephone preference people now need an 81 year old to pass over their card details over the phone! Total scam!”
And a third stated: “Lockdown appears to have triggered the scammers.
“Had three scam calls already, one from ‘HMRC’ – vile as vulnerable people are going to fall for the threats.
“Please, please don’t believe anything when you get an unexpected phone call, particularly on your landline.”
Responding to the reports from concerned Britons about the scam, HMRC Customer Support provided further information.
They wrote: “Hi. If HMRC were to phone you, it would be a call that you were expecting.
“HMRC do not call and threaten legal action. It is likely a phishing scam. If you can, please report this to our security teams.”
The Revenue has thankfully issued a guide to help Britons know what to look for, and whether correspondence they receive is a scam.
Britons could be facing a scam if the message they receive is unexpected, threatening, tells them to transfer money, or asks them for personal details.
Its website reads: “You can be sure that HMRC will only ever call you asking about a claim or payment on a debt that you already know about.
“HMRC will never leave a voicemail threatening legal action and will never give the reason for a call on a voice message.”
Those who have already shared personal details are encouraged to reach out to the HMRC security team immediately.
This can be done through the email@example.com email address.
Britons should include brief details of what they disclosed, for example name or address, but should not give personal details within the email.
Those who have suffered financial loss as a victim of a scam should also report this matter to Action Fraud.