Businesses and self-employed people are being warned about phishing emails claiming they are due a tax return.

Responding to this type of email could open your bank account to fraudsters, warned HMRC. “HMRC never contacts customers who are due a tax refund via email – we always send a letter through the post,” said Gareth Lloyd, head of digital security at HMRC.

More than 23,000 phishing emails were reported to HMRC in the three months prior to the January tax return deadline – an increase of 47% on the same period the previous year. During 2013 as a whole, customers reported more than 91,000 phishing emails to HMRC.

HMRC advises against clicking on links or attachments in the email. Instead they should forward the email to phishing@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk and delete permanently. Anyone who has responded to one should forward it and any disclosed details to security.custcon@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk.


More info See the HMRC website security page