New Year : Online Scams

Online scams, otherwise known as Internet Fraud, is when an email, phone call, or other form of online communication, is used deceptively against an individual, in order to receive financial or personal gain. Often, these  scams can appear to impersonate an individual , or corporation, that you regularly have interactions with. Historically, frequent scams have appeared as impersonating your bank, or as HMRC requiring personal information.

To avoid being scammed, be careful when (According to Citizens Advice):

  • Communication comes out of the blue or from someone you don’t know
  • Communication sounds out of the ordinary - like you’ve won the lottery, or you’ve been invited to invest in an ‘amazing’ scheme and keep it a secret
  • Someone or a corporation asks you to pay for something in advance - especially by bank transfer
  • Anyone asks you for personal information - like your bank details, computer passwords or PIN numbers
  • Someone pressures you into buying something or making a decision quickly - a trustworthy company will be happy to wait.
  • Someone asks you to phone an expensive number - these start with 070, 084, 087, 090, 091 or 098

    It is important to remember, that you rarely have to give out any personal finance information over the phone, or online. If your bank, or a corporation, required additional personal information, you should always do this in person, as and when you can.

    In addition, if you suspect you are being scammed via email, don’t download any files, or click any links attached to the message. These will likely be a form of virus or malware to extract personal data.

    In the unfortunate circumstance that you have been scammed, you can call the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 03454 04 05 06 or you can talk to a Welsh-speaking adviser on 03454 04 05 05. The helplines are open Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm.

    If you have any legal issues with regards to a scam or fraud, please call Ian Robinson on 023 9282 0747 for further information.

    On behalf of Churchers Solicitors, best wishes, and Happy New Year!

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