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Watch for these bogus HMRC scam calls

Paloma Kubiak
Written By:
Paloma Kubiak

Another Covid-19 telephone scam has been uncovered with fraudsters pretending to be from HMRC.

If you receive a call purporting to be from HMRC where you’re told you’ve underpaid council tax, you should put the phone down.

The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) said callers are told they’ve underpaid tax due to a change in the band under Covid-19 measures.

One victim was also threatened with a visit from the police and arrest if they didn’t hand over their payment details.

CTSI lead officer for doorstep scams, Katherine Hart, said: “This year has been profoundly challenging for everyone, and unscrupulous scammers have used the coronavirus pandemic to scare already vulnerable people into parting with their money. I am particularly concerned by the threatening language used by the callers and their aggressive posturing.

“HMRC will never demand your payment details over the phone, and they certainly won’t threaten you with arrest if you do not comply. Put the phone down on these demands, and if you receive a voice message asking you to call a number back, do not do it.

“This is but one of a series of scams through the telephone, email, and text pretending to be from HMRC. If you think it might be a scam, please check the HMRC’s website for a list of scams and report it to the authorities.”

If you think you’ve been scammed, report it to Action Fraud, or if in Scotland dial 101 and report it to Police Scotland.

Advice and guidance on how to protect yourself, or your business, from fraud and cybercrime, is available at www.gov.uk/coronavirus-fraud-and-cyber-crime.