Warning after fraudsters target couple in tax scam

Fraudsters claimed to be from HMRC.
Fraudsters claimed to be from HMRC.
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A couple from Long Sutton are issuing a warning to others after fraudsters tried to scam them out of £1,200.

Ray Fensom (79), received a phone call from a person claiming to be from HM Revenue and Customs yesterday morning (June 1) at around 10am.

His wife Gillian said: “The person on the phone told my husband he owed the money in income tax and that if he did not pay immediately they would call the police to come round. He had his card ready to pay but my son was there and put the phone down on them.

“We called Crimestoppers and they said HMRC would never call someone and ask them to pay money over the phone. When the caller rang back we took the number and reported it. We just want people to be aware. It is quite frightening to think how they got our phone number.”

A spokesperson for HMRC said: “HMRC takes security extremely seriously. We are aware that some people have received telephone calls from individuals claiming to be from HMRC. We are a well-known brand, which criminals abuse, to add credibility to their scams.

“We recommend that if you cannot verify the identity of a caller that you do not speak to them. We encourage you to check GOV.UK for information on how to avoid and report scams, recognise genuine HMRC contact and make payments to HMRC.”

Criminals have also tried to defraud people by sending out phishing emails claiming to be from HMRC.

HMRC said at the end of last year it had successfully reduced the number of phishing emails its customers received by 300 million.

You can report suspicious calls or emails to Action Fraud or go to www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs