HMRC warns of Phishing Scam

By October 15, 2015FAQ, Payroll Outsourcing

HMRC have released another warning about ‘phishing scams’.  The current scam is centred around the subject of complaints, and contains a malware attachment.

Phishing

This is the when fraudsters pretend to be somebody else in an attempt to gain access to personal information. Usually this is in the form of emails but can be in other ways such as social media posts. For more information see here.

Malware

This is malicious software that will attempt to be installed on your computer. Some malware could merely track your online activity but some could, for instance, gain your online bank details for criminals. There is a whole range of malware threats, and more can be seen here.

Self-Assessment Filing

The HMRC warning has been produced in the run up to the Self-Assessment Filing deadline. HMRC staff undertake mandatory training to identify potentially threatening emails, and they suggest individual business should look at their own systems and staff as well.

Tax Refunds

The email claiming to be notifying of a tax refund, with a link to click on, has been around for a while. Employees receiving a refund of tax, usually due to a tax code change, will generally receive this through the payroll, without any additional forms.

If an employee receives one of these emails they should forward it to the HMRC fraud department – phishing@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk.

Employers can always contact us for more information on what to do if an employee believes they have the wrong tax code, and what the likely consequences are.