The dangerous new scam you need to know about: Conmen target bank customers calling from a phone number that mimics that of their bank

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Conmen are targeting bank customers with a terrifying telephone scam only previously seen in the U.S.

This latest deception is known as ‘number spoofing’ because crooks call customers using a phone number which mimics that of their bank.They do this using a device which can copy any number — even if the one they are calling from is entirely different.

So, when a victim receives a call on  their mobile, or home phone if they have one which has a screen showing  incoming call details, the number of their bank will flash up on the  display. 

Full Story >> The MailOnline

Britain’s most wanted fraudsters: The faces of our men suspected of operating ‘boiler-room’ fraud from Spain

Four men are wanted for scams against the British public from Spain Graham Hawrysh, 37, and Robert Douglas Lynch, 53 are suspected.  Jeffrey Gordon, 54, has links to Romania as well as Ireland and Colombia.  Tunch Kashif, 48, is said to have engaged in various investment frauds

Boiler Room fraud happens when investors are sold worthless shares

Full Story >> The MailOnline 




Pension liberation fraud

Project Bloom, a new multi-agency campaign, aims to help prevent a form of fraud in which members of the public are encouraged to access their pension before retirement, without being properly informed of the potentially severe tax consequences.

Click to see press releases from Project Bloom

Pension liberation refers to pension scheme members transferring their savings to an arrangement which allows access to funds before the age of 55.  While in rare cases – such as terminal illness – early access to funds is possible, for most people the likely result is a tax bill of more than half of the pension’s value.

When added to the fees charged by the companies offering the ‘service’, there may be little or none of the money left for retirement.

The perpetrators’ approach to pension scheme members is usually via unsolicited phone call or text message, with a pushy ‘advisor’ offering cash incentives, ‘loans’, a ‘savings advance’ or ‘cash back’ from the individual’s pension.

Five key tips

As well as providing information to pension professionals, the campaign offers five key tips to help members of the public avoid becoming victims:

  1. Never give out financial or personal information to a cold caller.
  2. Find out about the company’s background through information online. Any advisers should be registered with the Financial Services Authority (FSA).
  3. Ask for a statement showing how your pension will be paid at retirement, and question who will look after your money until then.
  4. Speak to an adviser that is not associated with the proposal you’ve received, for unbiased advice.
  5. Never be rushed into agreeing to a pension transfer.

The initiative is supported by The Pensions Regulator, HM Revenue & Customs, the Financial Services Authority (FSA), Serious Fraud Office and SOCA (the Serious Organised Crime Agency).

Full information can be found here:

If you think you have been a victim of this or another form of fraud, contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040, or at Action Fraud.

Action Fraud is the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting centre. It provides a central point of contact for information about fraud and financially motivated internet crime. If you’ve been scammed, ripped off or conned, there is something you can do about it – get in touch with Action Fraud.

Beware the online pickpockets out to steal your wallet with your heart

Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate the heart – and protect the wallet. Like many holidays, it’s also a feast day for many scammers. The Better Business Bureau just released a Valentine’s day themed public safety announcement specifically aimed at those who date online. Partnering with Western Union, it warned that among those special someones found online are fraudsters.

This is not the first time that Better Business Bureau has taken the time to advise US consumers to beware. “Ho Ho Hold on before sending money to people you haven’t met,” the bureau advised this past holiday season.

Full Story >> The Guardian


Thousands of Barclays customer files stolen and sold to scammers – report

Details of 27,000 people who consulted bank’s advisers were allegedly copied from database to be sold on to rogue traders

An investigation is under way after confidential files relating to  customers of Barclays Bank were allegedly stolen and sold on to rogue  City traders.

The Mail on Sunday said highly sensitive information including  customers’ earnings, savings, mortgages, health issues and insurance  policies ended up in the hands of unscrupulous brokers.

The leak was exposed by an anonymous whistleblower who passed the  newspaper a memory stick containing files on 2,000 of the bank’s  customers, the paper said. He claimed it was a sample from a stolen database of up to 27,000  files, which he said could be sold by for up to £50 per  file.

Full Story >> The Guardian

HMRC issues scam tax rebate warning

Taxpayers are being warned not to respond to emails promising them a refund, which are really a phishing scam designed to get hold of their bank account details.

HM Revenue & Customs said it would never send customers emails to arrange refunds, and urged anyone receiving one to report it.

In 2013, customers reported more than 91,000 phishing emails to HMRC, and in the three months running up to the self-assessment deadline on 31 January the number of scam messages reported was up by 47% on the previous year.

Full Story >> The Guardian

How did I manage to fall for a Goa gem scam?

Sarah Bowles is articulate and bright. Here she talks about how she lost her life savings in India to fraudsters

When Sarah Bowles woke up in a Berlin youth hostel on a chilly morning just before Christmas, she felt both sick and relieved. Sick because she knew that her £6,500 life savings were lost and she would have to explain to her family why she was in Germany rather than travelling in India. And yet relieved that her ordeal was over, not least as she had avoided the  real threat of ending up in prison.

Her story? She had fallen for one of the growing number of ingenious jewellery scams being perpetrated against lone travellers – particularly in the Indian state of Goa, but also elsewhere.

Full Story >> The Guardian

Fraud decrease serves as vindication and warning says CIFAS

The analysis of fraud trends during 2013 by CIFAS – the UK’s Fraud Prevention Service reveals a surprising mix of apparently good and equally alarming news about fraud.

Overall, fraud levels decreased in 2013 by 11 percent from the levels recorded in 2012 – the first year on year drop since 2010 – but fraud remains at a much higher rate than in pre-recessionary times. The decrease, however, is proof of the positive preventative impact of counter fraud measures such as data sharing. While there are some alarming fluctuations within the fraud figures, the most notable findings are: Over 221,000 confirmed frauds were identified during 2013. While this is an 11 percent decrease from the previous few years, the level is still higher than fraud levels recorded in 2008 and 2010. Identity crimes – where fraudsters use a person’s identity data to impersonate them (identity fraud) or hijack an individual’s existing account (facility takeover fraud) – still accounted for over 60 percent of all frauds. Over 125,000 individual instances of an identifiable person becoming victim to fraud. Some startling variations from 2012 have occurred in terms of the products targeted by fraudsters: frauds against mail order and bank accounts have experienced sizeable decreases, while loan and plastic card (e.g. store and credit cards) accounts have seen notable surges. Plastic cards are now the product most commonly targeted by fraudsters (up by 24 percent from the levels of 2012 and accounting for 30 percent of all confirmed fraud in 2013).

Full Story >> HRDirector Business News