Beware of phishing scams and fraud during COVID-19

August 13th, 2020

As more of the Government’s emergency finance schemes to help businesses affected by the pandemic become available, we are issuing another warning to be extremely vigilant about any communications you receive.

The second payment from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) is due to be released this month, and already scammers are taking advantage of vulnerable traders who might be susceptible to fraud.

Phishing texts, calls and emails are being circulated by criminals posing as HMRC, encouraging self-employed workers to visit a site and share their personal details to receive payment under the SEISS.

This is a reminder that any communication purporting to be from HMRC should not be taken at face value; please spare some time to make sure any contact you receive is legitimate. Additionally, do not click on any links in emails you receive, claiming to be from HMRC. Many of these emails are illegitimate and could result in identity theft or loss of earnings.

If you receive a text, phone call or email regarding grants and pay-outs, simply contact HMRC yourself to validate the query. You can find the relevant department here: https://www.gov.uk/contact-hmrc.

You can also contact us and check whether the nature of the communication is something HMRC would legitimately contact you about.

You should inform Action Fraud of any text, email or call which turns out to be bogus by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting https://reporting.actionfraud.police.uk/reporting. Additional security advice can be found on the gov.uk website, here.

Stay vigilant and protect yourself during this difficult time; it will pay to be patient.

If you have any questions please contact your Champion Advisor.


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