‘Phishing’ is defined by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) as being ‘when criminals use scam emails, text messages or phone calls to trick their victims’.
Their aim is usually to access personal information that they’ll then use to their advantage. For all the benefits that technology brings, phishing is surely one of the biggest disadvantages we have to contend with, whether as business owners or individuals.
Our recommendation would be first, to be extremely vigilant for phishing attempts, but also to report any that you do receive. Only by doing so can we hope to reduce the numbers, or even to keep them down. As of March 2022 the NCSC has received over 11 million reported scams, but it can only act against the perpetrators if we report them.
You can report phishing attempts here, regardless of the type you receive.
HMRC regularly update their scam warnings, to let taxpayers know of the most recent variations. We make no apologies for there consequently being several variations on a theme within this section. We see it as part of our responsibility to pass on this news to clients and contacts to keep them as safe as we can.
Ideally, this section will be one that we don’t add to very frequently, but that may be a naive wish!
If you’re a client and you receive any communications from HMRC, either through the post or by telephone, please let us know.
Please also note that HMRC do NOT contact taxpayers by email or text, and will not contact you in either way to discuss a refund or late payment. This type of contact is usually a scam, so please do not follow any links that may be included, and delete the text or email. If you’re unsure, please feel free to send the email or an image of the text on to us to review for you.
HMRC updates their phishing guidance
In light of ever increasing phishing attempts, HMRC have updated their guidance around recognising genuine communications from them. These communications cover email, letter and telephone contacts made by HMRC to taxpayers.
Beware the Self Assessment Scam!
It’s the most wonderful time of the year… for scammers! We’re heading closer towards the filing deadline for Self Assessment Tax Returns and the due date for Payments on Account. As a result, many people would be unsurprised to receive an email, text or call from HMRC.
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Why not take a look at these sections too, as there is some overlap between our categories and we’d hate you to miss out!
Management & Growth
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Can I just say we are so pleased that we have moved to Baranov Associates. As we discussed when you visited, we had to find a way to take the stress out of all of the financials and you’re doing that for us! We can see how to use Xero more efficiently and so with us being as on top of it as we can be and with you and Liz we feel a lot more confident about our business being in good shape.
Mrs S James, Sandbanks Capital Partners Limited
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