Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Warnings given as fake lockdown grant being offered in text messages

With the new lockdown, a fresh wave of scams have cropped up offering financing.

Reports from Sky News pinpoint texts offering a fake third lockdown HMRC grant, which aims to get card details by saying they are required to receive the non-existent grant.

Signalling the fraudulent text messages are grammar and spelling errors.

Taking advantage of the confusion following yesterday’s announcement, one message seen by Sky News states: “From HMRC: The third lockdown has been announced, we have been issued a grant off £240 to help during this period, visit to claim:” This is followed by a link to a website that is made to look like the Government site, though it is not hosted on the domain.

HMRC has uncovered 275 COVID-19 related financial scams since March.

According to ActionFraud, more than £4.6m was lost to coronavirus scams during the first lockdown.

Help for identifying HMRC scams can be found here.

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