DWP scam warning: Don’t get caught out by fraudsters this weekend | Personal Finance | Finance | #phishing | #scams

Scams now account for more than a third (39 percent) of all crime according to figures from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) for 2021. While there are a variety of scams doing the rounds, fraudsters are taking advantage of the cost of living crisis to con people out of cash.

The DWP warnings have been echoed by Money Saving Expert founder Martin Lewis who mentioned the scam in his weekly MSE newsletter.

Action Fraud is also asking people to be vigilant and not fall for an Ofgem scam.

A spokesperson warned: “In May, former Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that all households with an electricity supply would receive a £400 grant.

“However, this will be paid in lump sums from October automatically – there’s no need to apply.

“You will never be texted by Ofgem to sign up to anything in order to get money or a rebate – so if you get a text like this, don’t respond to it or click any links.”

READ MORE: Universal Credit: Why you might not receive £324 cost of living boost

Fraudsters are becoming more and more sophisticated and are even able to ‘spoof’ numbers of banks.

This Morning viewer Millie Clark how she lost £22,000 in a sophisticated scam, where fraudsters convinced her they were from her bank, HSBC.

She received a call from someone pretending to be from HSBC and when she questioned if they were from the bank the caller asked her to check the reverse of her bank card.

The number was the same because fraudsters can “number spoof” which means they can change their number identity to match the bank’s.

Meanwhile, there are a number of HMRC scams currently doing the rounds which people need to watch out for. HMRC recently issued three tips to help people spot a scam:

  • Stop: Take a moment to think before parting with your money or information. If a phone call, text or email is unexpected, don’t give out private information or reply, and don’t download attachments or click on links before checking on GOV.UK that the contact is genuine. Do not trust caller ID on phones. Numbers can be spoofed.
  • Challenge: It’s OK to reject, refuse or ignore any requests – only criminals will try to rush or panic you. Search ‘scams’ on GOV.UK for information on how to recognise genuine HMRC contact and how to avoid and report scams.
  • Protect: Forward suspicious texts claiming to be from HMRC to 60599 and emails to phishing@hmrc.gov.uk. Report tax scam phone calls on GOV.UK. Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen victim to a scam and report it to Action Fraud.

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