Residents are being warned about phishing emails and texts purporting to be from HMRC concerning tax rebates.
Victims to this scam have downloaded a word document attached to an email and unknowingly downloaded files from a hacked website which installs ransomware. When victims click on the link in the HMRC spoofed texts they are redirected to a registration page requesting personal details.
The emails and texts appear genuine and the victims who have provided their personal details have consequently had direct debits, mobile phone contracts and new bank accounts set up using their personal information.
HMRC have advised on their website that this is a fraud and stressed that they would never contact people using these methods.
If you believe you have had a ransomware attack on your device, it is important to take your device to an IT specialist, who can ensure that the virus has been removed. Once this is done, you should install and update an anti-virus software to the device, as well as back-up your files stored on it. Also be aware of any future possible scam emails which appear in your inbox.
Don’t click on links or open any attachments you receive in unsolicited emails or SMS messages. Remember that fraudsters can ‘spoof’ an email address to make it look like one used by someone you trust. If you are unsure, check the email header to identify the true source of communication. Details on finding email headers can be found online.
Complete the new 2016/17 Cyber Crime survey, so we can see the full scope of Cyber Crime in Warwickshire, and across West Mercia, the West Midlands and Staffordshire – https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/RegionalCyber16
For more information about our work, please visit www.safeinwarwickshire.com/cybercrime
Cyber Aware is a cross-government campaign, funded by the National Cyber Security Programme. They aim to measurably and significantly improve the online safety behaviour and confidence of consumers and small businesses (SMEs).
Get Safe Online is the UK’s leading source of factual and easy-to-understand information on online safety. Their website offers advice on how you can protect yourself, your computers and devices, and your business against the likes of fraud, identity theft, viruses and other potential online problems.