HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is calling on Self-Assessment taxpayers to be wary of scammers posing as the tax authority, as the 31 January 2021 deadline creeps up once more.
As is typical at this time of year, perpetrators are using calls, emails and text messages to target unsuspecting individuals and often with news of a ‘significant tax rebate’ sitting on their account.
The language they use is designed to convince taxpayers to divulge personal information, in order to claim the amount owed to them.
The fraudsters use the information to gain access to the individuals bank account and often sell details on to other criminals.
In the past year alone, HMRC purports to have responded to more than 846,000 reports of suspicious contact from the public and to have uncovered 15,500 malicious webpages.
Alongside its warning, HMRC has said that taxpayers can usually identify a scam if the communication:
- is unexpected;
- offers a refund, tax rebate or grant;
- asks for personal information – i.e. bank details;
- is threatening; or,
- tells you to transfer a sum of money.
Further details regarding scams and HMRC’s policies can be found by clicking here.
How can George Hay help?
We would encourage any of our clients who receive suspicious communications regarding tax rebates or self-assessment payments, to contact their usual adviser in the first instance. The knowledge we have of your tax affairs means we can help you to discern legitimate communication from fraudulent contact.
To speak to one of the team, please contact us today.