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Monday, 9 March 2015

Tax rebate

Boy, am I lucky?  HMRC have just emailed me to say that after calculating my annual fiscal activities I am due a tax refund of £364.02.  All I have to do is send them my credit card details including the 3 digit number on the back and they will credit the amount direct onto my credit card.  I can’t thank the tax man enough.  Sadly it is a scam, one of many, which are circulating at the moment.

Common sense should alert anyone receiving this type of email that it is not genuine by answering the following questions:

  • Is the link they use in the email a .gov  URL?      
    No It's not.


  • Why would HMRC need a credit card to rebate my tax? 
    They wouldn't


  • HMRC takes the tax money, via payroll, direct from my salary so why do they not address me by name? 
    The scammers do not know my name.


  • I also received a notice of coding for the upcoming tax year by post and this does not show that I have overpaid my tax; is this correct? 
    Yes it is as they show my name and my address as well as the tax reference and my employer.


  • As I pay tax on PAYE is it realistic that I have been overcharged tax?
    Unlikely.


  • HMRC usually contact me by post using my name so why have they decided to use insecure  e-mail? 
    HMRC would not use email to contact me.

Once the answers have been taken it is clear that the email is not genuine and should be deleted.

Quite a number of people have been taken in by this scam and lost money as a result.

Perhaps I am becoming cynical but I tend to question anything that is out of the ordinary.  Of course there have been the odd occasion when I have been caught out but vigilance is paying dividends.

Common sense 1   
Scammers 0

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