TAX payers in Northumberland have been urged to be wary of email scams.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has received more than 46,000 reports of ‘phishing’ emails and helped to shut down more than 150 scam websites since the beginning of April.
Fraudsters are sending emails telling recipients they are due a tax rebate and directing them to a click-through link to a cloned replica of the HMRC website. They are then asked to provide their credit or debit card details.
The criminals then attempt to take money from their victim’s account, while the personal details could be sold on to other organised gangs.
Director of HMRC Online and Digital Joan Wood said: “We currently only ever contact customers who are due a tax refund in writing by post.
“We don’t use telephone calls, emails or external companies in these circumstances.
“If anyone receives an email claiming to be from HMRC please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org before deleting it permanently.”