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From Covid-19 to charity appeals, scammers love taking advantage of current events. Find out about the latest scams and how criminals are using misinformation to take money.
If something looks suspicious, the best thing to do is nothing. Don't click or select links, give any details or do what it wants you to do. Instead, look online for the company’s official details and contact them direct.
If something looks too good to be true, it probably is. When something doesn't feel right, stop and think about who is asking you to do it and why.
The number one way to stop scammers is by making sure your password and security settings are strong, updated regularly and available to you alone.
When coronavirus hit the headlines, scammers didn’t waste any time finding ways to take advantage. From urging people to buy fake goods online like vaccines and facemasks, to targeting vulnerable people on the doorstep. Here are some of the scams that are active right now.
There have been reports of fake NHS emails, text messages, letters and even home visits offering Covid-19 vaccinations if you pay for it.
Keep an eye out for emails or text messages that look as though they’re from the NHS asking you to share bank details. The Covid-19 vaccine is free, and the NHS will never arrive unannounced at your home to administer it.
If someone contacts you about the vaccine and you're not sure if they’re genuine, end the conversation and contact your local GP.
Fake messages from Gov.uk have been doing the rounds offering tax refunds, benefit payments and fines. The messages are designed to entice you to select or click on a link or call a number that will take you to a fake website or call centre where criminals will try to get you to enter your personal information.
Think before you click. Be wary of unexpected emails or text messages asking you to click links or telephone a company. Don’t provide any personal information unless you’re 100% sure who you’re dealing with.
If in doubt, contact the company by looking up their number, then call them to confirm the message is really from them. You can also report fake government messages to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or at actionfraud.police.uk.
Online shopping increased during the pandemic and so did the rise in shopping sites selling fake virus testing kits, miracle cures, masks and anti-bacterial products.
People or companies offering Covid-related products might not be genuine businesses. If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Don’t hand over money, bank details or personal information to any company you’re not 100% sure about. You can also report fake government messages to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or at actionfraud.police.uk.
Lots of new groups popped up during the pandemic and, while most had good intentions, not all were genuine.
Be cautious about anyone offering services like shopping, home cleaning or medication collection to lonely or vulnerable people.
It’s always fine to say no and close the door to unexpected callers, whoever they say they are.
If you think you've uncovered a scam, been targeted by a scam or fallen victim to fraudsters, the best thing to do is act quickly.
Here are some other official websites and resources dedicated to keeping you safe from fraud.
Take Five is a national campaign that offers straight-forward and impartial advice to help everyone protect themselves from preventable financial fraud.
Do you think you can tell a scam from the genuine thing? Put your ability to spot a scam to the test with the Take Five quiz.
takefive-stopfraud.org.uk is an external website. Skipton Building Society cannot be held responsible for the content of external websites.
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Site intended for UK residents only. Skipton Building Society is a member of the Building Societies Association. Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority, under registration number 153706, for accepting deposits, advising on and arranging mortgages and providing Restricted financial advice.Principal Office, The Bailey, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD23 1DN.