Interactive Investor

97% fall in reports of scam HMRC phone calls

21st January 2022 11:41

Jemma Jackson from interactive investor

interactive investor comments on the latest figures.

  • Reports of scam HMRC phone calls have fallen by 97% over the last 12 months, latest HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) figures show.
  • Reports of scammers impersonating HMRC in phone calls peaked at 79,477 in March 2021 and fell to just 2,491 in December 2021.
  • The fall in scam call reports to HMRC has also been seen elsewhere with an 92% drop in phishing email reports and a 97% drop in scam text reports over the last year.

Commenting, Myron Jobson, Personal Finance Campaigner, interactive investor, says: “Any fall in fraudulent activity is welcome, but we all must remain on high alert. Financial scams have mushroomed during the pandemic, with fraudsters using the ever evolving Covid situation to callously exploit people.

“Scammers are constantly reinventing themselves to find new ways of tricking people – and anyone could be a victim. In addition to pounds and pence financial loss, there is a broader psychological and emotional impact of financial fraud that can linger and cause distress well after the scam is over.

“Financial scams are increasingly sophisticated and more support is needed to help consumers get a step ahead of the criminals. Hopefully the Online Safety Bill goes a long way towards plugging the flood of financial scams. However, the onus is on individuals to avoid falling prey to financial fraud – there is no getting away from it.

“Scammers are indiscriminate in who they target, so we all need to be on our guard. Treat any unsolicited contact on loans with caution. You can check the FCA register to verify the legitimacy of financial firms. Watch out for a dodgy looking website address, poor grammar and spelling, a lack of reliable contact information among other. But also, be mindful that scams are becoming increasingly sophisticated too. And never trust anyone wanting personal information.”

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