Its approaching the tax return deadline, and look at the email we have received:
Of course, it is a scam. I imagine many small businesses up and down the country will have received an email like this, on the off chance that a handful will fall for it.
How do we know it’s a scam?
Well, for a start it came to an email address that isn’t registered for important things like tax returns. That was a bit of a giveaway, but let’s take a good long look at it.
- The email address. Display name: Kelli Boyer. Matches her sign off in the email. Big tick. However, look at the actual email address: Gwen.firstname.lastname@example.org. ‘Gwen’. What a strange email address for a person named Kelli.
- The URL. It’s Turkish. Now, I don’t know about you, but I would expect a UK Tax Inspector to have an UK URL.
- The website at the end of it appears to be a media and telecoms business. So, not that of a UK tax inspector.
- The attachment; I’m pretty sure that a tax inspector would not send you an email containing an attachment before you have actually employed them to inspect your tax return. Do not open the attachment. Especially given the limited content, dodgy email address and website.
- The content: Tax inspectors are professional people. They will have professional looking email templates, better signatures containing the basics (name, email address, phone number, possibly an address), would address you by name, and write more than the couple of sentences in the email above.
Keep an eye out for this blatant con. Don’t download any attachments from unknown senders. Stay secure.
If you believe that it could be genuine, then in the case here, pick up the phone to the HMRC, and ask them to confirm the payment has been made. I’m sure they won’t deny you an answer.