There’s nothing better than completing your tax return and finding out you are due a refund – brilliant! However I received a text message today from “HMRC” and it got me thinking, how do you know whether correspondence you receive from HMRC is genuine or not?
I received the following text message from someone claiming to be HMRC earlier today:
Looks convincing, right?
HMRC will never contact you via text or email to let you know you are due a refund of tax.
You could be tempted to click the link, but don’t. It will usually be some sort of virus or phishing link. I’ve prepared five useful tips below to help you spot a fake HMRC text or email.
- Check the address it is sent from. HMRC email addresses all end @hmrc.gov.uk so unless it is specifically like that, delete.
- Check who it is addressed to. HMRC will never address you as “Dear Customer” or “Dear Client”. The will always use at least your first name, if not your first and last name.
- What is the text email asking you to do? HMRC will never ask you for personal information or bank details. If you are being asked for this then the email or text will be fake.
- Dont open web links or attachments. .zip file are a great way for a hacker to store a virus, and opening them on your PC could allow them access to your data without you even know. Web links can also lead to websites which may look genuine but are probably not.
- If you receive anything suspicious, report it. If you receive an email that looks dodgy, you can report it to HMRC here.
Finally, if you have completed your tax return with myself and were due a refund of tax, you won’t be due another one until next year. I will claim everything you are entitled to in one go as long as you give me complete and accurate information. If HMRC disagrees with the figures I have provided them with on your behalf, they will usually let you know via a letter to your home address.
For more information on what I can do for you please call 0800 8654330 or 07857 380805, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find more information on my services by clicking here.