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Police: Sharp rise in fake TSB text messages and phishing emails

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • Action Fraud is warning the public about a sharp rise in fraudsters sending out fake text messages and phishing emails claiming to be from TSB. 
     
  • Since the start of May, there have been 321 phishing reports made to Action Fraud – an increase on the previous month where 30 reports were made.
     
  • In the same reporting period, there have been 51 reports of cybercrime to Action Fraud which mention TSB – an increase on the previous month, where 24 reports were made.
     
  • Action Fraud and TSB are working together to combat fraud and help keep all consumers safe.

How is this happening?

The increase in the number of reports being sent to Action Fraud is in part linked to the system issue some TSB customers have experienced over recent weeks. Opportunistic fraudsters are using TSB’s system issue to target people with this type of fraud. TSB, or any bank, will never ask for a PIN, password or full memorable information by email or text. 

Fraudsters are commonly using text messages as a way to defraud unsuspecting...

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Police: Fraudsters taking advantage of the HMRC tax refund process

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) are currently processing tax refunds after the end of the tax year and criminals are taking advantage by sending out phishing emails and text messages.
 

The fraudulent emails and texts include links which take victims to fake websites where their personal and financial information can be stolen. 
 

In March 2018, HMRC requested 2,672 phishing websites be taken down and received 84,549 phishing reports. HMRC have warned that this kind of phishing is expected to continue in the coming months as genuine tax refunds are issued.

Tax refunds only come through the post or your employer 

Treasury Minister, Mel Stride MP, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury said: “HMRC only informs you about tax refunds through the post or through your pay via your employer. All emails, text messages, or voicemail messages saying you have a tax refund are a scam. Do not click on any links in these messages and forward them to HMRC’s phishing email address and phone number.
 

“We know that...

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Police: Action Fraud warning to the public as equine fraud costs victims £70,000

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • Action Fraud is warning the equestrian community about a scam involving fake adverts of horses for sale.
     
  • Victims are told to pay an up-front fee for the horse and it’s shipment only to later find that it doesn’t exist.
     
  • Between 2014 and 2017, victims lost £68,717 to this fraud; an average of £3,436 per victim.

Action Fraud is warning horse buyers about fraudulent ‘for sale’ adverts. Fraudsters are placing fake adverts on reputable equestrian sale websites to scam victims out of large amounts of money. Fraudsters will even support their claims of the horse’s existence by supplying copies of relevant ownership documents, pictures and videos of the animal.   

Although the adverts claim the horses are located in the UK, victims are later told that they’re located elsewhere in Europe and that the horse’s shipment can be arranged via an animal transport company. 
 
On agreeing to buy the horse, victims are then contacted by someone who claims to be an agent of the transport...

Continues, Read More...



Police: Fraudsters offering discounts on TV subscriptions

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog

Action Fraud have noticed an increase in reports where fraudsters are offering victims discounts on their TV subscription, or told their account needs to be renewed. 

How does this scam work?

Fraudsters are cold-calling victims, purporting to be from a Television (TV) provider offering a discount on their monthly subscription. Victims are usually told;

  • Their subscription needs to be renewed.
  • Part of (or all) of their TV equipment has expired.
  • They are due an upgrade on their equipment/subscription package. 

In order to falsely process the discount, the fraudster asks victims to confirm or provide their bank account details. The scammers may also request the victim’s identification documents, such as scanned copies of passports.

Later victims make enquiries and then discover that their TV service provider did not call them and that the fraudster has made transactions using the victim’s bank account details.

Affecting people nationwide

This type of fraud is nationwide. Since the beginning of this year (2018), there have...

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Police: Action Fraud warns of Hajj fraud, as criminals target Muslims booking trips to Mecca

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • Action Fraud is raising awareness of Hajj related fraud, in a drive to increase reporting and to protect individuals from falling victim.
  • In 2017, the average reported loss to victims was £5,869.
  • Between 2013 and 2017, the crimes had a total reported value of £988,743.

What is Hajj fraud?

Up to 25,000 British Muslims will be booking trips to Mecca over the coming months to perform Hajj in the autumn.

As Hajj approaches, a number of individuals who have paid for a tour package for themselves and their family will discover their dreams have been shattered by fraudsters.

Some could arrive in Saudi Arabia to find the accommodation they booked does not exist. Others may realise that their whole trip is in fact a scam set up by illegitimate travel operators who have disappeared with thousands of pounds of their money.

Between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2017 there were 17 reports of Hajj related fraud made to Action Fraud, marking a 143% increase on the previous year’s reporting...

Continues, Read More...



Police: Action Fraud warns football fans ahead of 2018 World Cup

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • The 2018 FIFA World Cup, which takes place from 14 June – 15 July, is an opportunity for fraudsters to take advantage of unsuspecting fans. 
  • Between 2013 and 2015, over 600 reports were made to Action Fraud in relation to the 2014 World Cup.
  • Football fans should be cautious and Take Five before purchasing goods and services online.

The worldwide demand for match tickets, accommodation and flight tickets throughout the competition is expected to be high. Action Fraud is warning those planning to travel to be cautious when buying tickets or accommodation because the event is likely to be targeted by fraudsters looking to take advantage of unsuspecting fans.

Fraudsters will likely be posing as:

  • Official World Cup ticket vendors or private individuals attempting to sell on a match ticket via an online marketplace.
  • A fraudulent website or operator offering non-existent flights or other transport to host cities.
  • An accommodation booking service, hotel or operator, offering seemingly convenient accommodation in one of...

    Continues, Read More...


Police: Automated Action Fraud Tech Support scam calls

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog

We are aware of fraudsters claiming to be from Action Fraud contacting victims using automated phone calls in order to gain remote access to their computers and drain bank accounts. 

How does this scam work?

Victims are receiving cold-calls from fraudsters purporting to represent Action Fraud. When the calls are answered, an automated voice asks the responder to “press 1 if you have made a report to Action Fraud.” When the responder presses 1, they are transferred to a fraudster. 
 
Victims are informed that their computers have been hacked, which has led to their online bank account being compromised and funds being withdrawn. One particular victim was told that £40,000 had fraudulently left their account.

Remote access

Questions that are commonly asked by fraudsters include asking whether the victim’s broadband router is displaying flashing lights, as well as asking for/confirming personal information. 

This leads to the fraudster asking for remote access to the victim’s computer, via a remote access tool....

Continues, Read More...



Police: Well-known names being used in cryptocurrency scams

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • Action Fraud is warning the public about the growing problem of criminals using the reputation of prominent people in cryptocurrency scams.
     
  • Deborah Meaden from the BBC’s Dragon’s Den and Martin Lewis, the founder of MoneySavingExpert.com have spoken out after fraudulent cryptocurrency investment websites falsely claim to be endorsed by them.
     
  • In March alone, Action Fraud received 21 reports of this kind, with a total reported loss of more than £34,000 to victims.

Fraudulent websites claiming to offer cryptocurrency investments are using images and fabricating recommendations from prominent individuals such as Deborah Meaden from the BBC’s Dragons' Den and Martin Lewis, the founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, without their consent. 

The adverts are placed on social media and other websites and use images of these individuals to promote fraudulent cryptocurrency investments. Clicking on the advert takes you to the full article where their images are presented along with fake quotes recommending that you make...

Continues, Read More...



Police: Action Fraud reports show £6.7 million lost to holiday booking fraud

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • Fraudsters stole £6.7 million from 4,700 unsuspecting holidaymakers and other travellers in 2017.
  • 575 people received medical treatment or were at risk of bankruptcy as a result.

A report compiled by Action Fraud, which is run by the City of London Police, reveals the scale of reported crime and exposes the common tactics used by fraudsters. 

The average amount lost per person was over £1,500, an increase of 25% year on year. These individual losses are substantial, but this form of fraud also has other severe effects with almost half (2,245) of victims saying that it also had a significant impact on their health or financial wellbeing. Most worryingly of all, 575 people said the impact on them was so severe that they had to receive medical treatment or were at risk of bankruptcy.

The most common types of fraud relate to the sale of airline tickets (47%) and accommodation booking (38%).

4,700 people told Action Fraud that they had been the victim of a travel related fraud in 2017. The three...

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Police: Action Fraud reports show £6.7 million lost to holiday booking fraud

Written by RSS Poster ActionFraud's blog
  • The City of London Police, ABTA and Get Safe Online join forces to combat holiday fraud.
  • Fraudsters stole £6.7 million from 4,700 unsuspecting holidaymakers and other travellers in 2017.
  • 575 people received medical treatment or were at risk of bankruptcy as a result.

A report compiled by Action Fraud, which is run by the City of London Police, reveals the scale of reported crime and exposes the common tactics used by fraudsters. 

The average amount lost per person was over £1,500, an increase of 25% year on year. These individual losses are substantial, but this form of fraud also has other severe effects with almost half (2,245) of victims saying that it also had a significant impact on their health or financial wellbeing. Most worryingly of all, 575 people said the impact on them was so severe that they had to receive medical treatment or were at risk of bankruptcy.

The most common types of fraud relate to the sale of airline tickets (47%) and accommodation booking (38%).

4,700 people told...

Continues, Read More...





Latest ActionFraud\'s Blog Stories

Sharp rise in fake TSB text messages and phishing emails
Fraudsters taking advantage of the HMRC tax refund process
Action Fraud warning to the public as equine fraud costs victims £70,000
Fraudsters offering discounts on TV subscriptions
Action Fraud warns of Hajj fraud, as criminals target Muslims booking trips to Mecca

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