Every little refund helps right? Sadly, that council tax refund announcement you may have received is yet another phishing scam, and not that piece of relief you are looking for.
This latest scam starts by announcing you will receive a council tax refund and ends with a malicious site which asks for enough personal information to scam you for money. At first glance, these emails look genuine – they use official branding and government logos, and they claim to come from GOV.UK. But the devil is in the detail, and you can train yourself to identify phishing scams.
What should you look for? There are definite clues in the email you receive. First of all, look for strange looking email addresses from the sender – usually without the usual .gov.uk suffix. For some reason scammers always seem to forget to proofread their texts, so look out for typos and errors. In this particular scam, there is a very small difference in the refund value quoted in the email header and the text.
When you do discover a phishing scam like this, don’t click the link. If you opened the email on a work computer, or when you are logging on through a work network, notify IT security immediately as they can take steps to keep both you and the company safe.
Always remember, never fill in your financial details if you are unsure about who you are giving them to.