HMRC Alert

Courier Fraud Alert – 04/06/2019

And the industry sector most vulnerable to cyber attacks goes to… (drum-roll, please!)… Finance

After a short hiatus, finance has returned as the most attacked industry sector in the EMEA, mainly thanks to web application attacks, says research

According to the NTT Security‘s 2019 Global Threat Intelligence Report, the finance industry in EMEA accounted for 30% of all attacks – compared to 17% globally, reinforcing its vulnerability to cybercrime.

As such, finance has knocked business and professional services off the top spot, which was last year’s most attacked sector at 20%.


Tens of thousands of fraud victims are being failed by police as officers routinely drop probes because the crime ‘doesn’t bang, bleed or shout’

Fraud victims are being betrayed by police who fail to investigate tens of thousands of swindlers.

Officers routinely drop probes into bank scams, which cost the UK £190billion a year, because the crime does not ‘bang, bleed or shout’, a damning report has warned.

Incredibly, one force dropped 96 per cent of cases it received from the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau – even though some had good evidence, including identified suspects, said the police watchdog.

HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) said some forces were deliberately ‘seeking reasons’ not to investigate, with teams set up to ‘suppress demand’, effectively a form of rationing of police services.


Tackling Economic Crime Awards (TECAs)

Tackling Economic Crime Awards (TECAs) launched

Today (5th March 2019) saw the launch of the Tackling Economic Crime Awards (TECAs).

Economic Crime has a significant impact on the UK economy; with an estimated 3.24 million fraud offences taking place year ending March 2018 (Office of National Statistics 2018).  These new awards serve to reward and acknowledge those who make a significant contribution in driving out any area of Economic Crime, such as fraud, money laundering, bribery and corruption.

The TECAs are independent – with all the leading associations and groups supporting the awards including:

  • Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE)
  • Cabinet Office
  • Centre for Counter Fraud Studies, University of Portsmouth
  • Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA)
  • City of London Police
  • Fraud Advisory Panel
  • Insurance Fraud Bureau
  • London Fraud Forum
  • North East Fraud Forum
  • Serious Fraud Office
  • UK Finance

The high-status judges are nominated by these groups and include, Commissioner Ian Dyson QPM; Katy Worobec, Managing Director, Economic Crime at UK Finance; Professor Mark Button of the University of Portsmouth and many others – they mark to a strict ethics policy.

Professor Martin Gill founder of the TECAs commented: “The TECAs have been developed to be different; to be independent, ethical and to provide a level playing field. They focus on outstanding people, teams, initiatives and companies within the public, private and third sectors – committed to tackling any area of economic crime.”

Gill further added: “The judging process is rigorous and robust, and the esteemed panel of judges will review and score entries independently, ensuring that only the very best are selected as finalists and winners.”

The TECAs will be presented a prestigious awards dinner to be held in central London on Monday, 9th December 2019.  The inaugural awards are sponsored by fraud technology provider Altia-ABM and COO, Rob Sinclair commented:

“We are proud to be associated with this initiative and delighted to be sponsoring the 2019 awards.  Economic Crime has an impact on everyone, and those who have shown leadership and innovation to desist this area of crime deserve to be recognised for their achievements.”

Entry to the awards will open on 2nd April 2019 and anyone working in, or from the UK can enter – with nominations invited in fourteen categories.

More information about the TECAs can be found at //

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Tenancy Deposit Scheme Alert

Lonely Hearts Romance Fraudster Alert


Catherine De Bolle, Executive Director of Europol:-

It is my pleasure to introduce the 2018 Internet Organised Crime Threat Assessment (IOCTA), not only as it is the fifth anniversary edition of the report, but also my first as the Executive Director of Europol.

The IOCTA has been and continues to be a flagship strategic product for Europol. It provides a unique law enforcement focused assessment of the emerging threats and key developments in the field of cybercrime over the last year. This is of course only possible thanks to the invaluable contributions from European law enforcement and the ongoing support we receive from our partners in private industry, the financial sector and academia.

Each year the report highlights cyber-attacks of an unprecedented scope and scale. This year is no different, demonstrating the continuing need for greater cooperation and collaboration within our law enforcement community, an ethos at the very heart of Europol’s mission. The report also brings to our attention previously underestimated threats, such as telecommunication frauds, demonstrating the necessity for law enforcement to constantly adapt and develop and the need for continued training in all aspects of cybercrime.

While some cyber-attacks continue to grab headlines with their magnitude, other areas of cybercrime are no less of a threat or concern. Payment fraud continues to emphasise significant financial losses, criminal gains and the facilitation of other crime; while online child sexual exploitation epitomises the worst aspects of the internet and highlights the ever present danger to our children from those who would seek to exploit or abuse them.

This year’s report also describes a number of key legislative and technological developments, such as the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the Network and Information Security (NIS) directive and 5G technology. While these developments are positive, all will in some way impact on our ability as law enforcement officers to effectively investigate cybercrime. This emphasises the need for law enforcement to engage with policy makers, legislators and industry, in order to have a voice in how our society develops.





Are you at risk of being scammed on your phone? Millions don’t have antivirus software – and feel pressured by limited-time offers

As many as 61 per cent of smartphone users could be leaving themselves vulnerable to scammers online, according to a new survey.

With more people now shopping online with their phones than ever before, only two in five surveyed by IT security company ESET were certain they had antivirus software on their mobile phones.,

Additionally, many also revealed they would consider downloading an app, entering an online competition, or clicking through to a deal received via email to take advantage of limited-time offers.


HM Revenue And Customs Alert – 07/01/2019

HM Revenue and Customs Alert

What you need to know
Action Fraud has experienced an increase in the reporting of malicious calls, voicemails, text messages or emails to members of the public purporting to be from HMRC.

The fraudsters state that as a result of their non-payment of tax or other duty, the victim is liable to prosecution or other legal proceedings such as repossession of belongings to settle the balance but can avoid this by arranging for payment to be made immediately by method such as bank transfer or by iTunes gift cards.

If the victim is hesitant or refuses to comply, the suspect makes a threat such as immediate arrest, bailiffs or in cases where the victim appears to be of overseas origin; deportation.

Often, the period for which the tax is allegedly due is distant enough to guarantee the victim will have little, if any, paperwork or ability to verify the claims. Once the money is paid the suspects sever all contact.

It is vital that the public exercise caution when receiving messages or telephone calls of this nature.

What you need to do
Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information. Just because someone knows your basic details (such as your name and contact details), it doesn’t mean they are genuine. Instead, contact the company directly using trusted methods such as a known email address or phone number.

Listen to your instincts. If something feels wrong then it is usually right to question it. No genuine organisation will ask you to pay taxes, bills or fees using iTunes Gift Cards, or any other type of voucher.

Don’t be rushed or pressured into making a decision. Under no circumstances would a genuine bank or some other trusted organisation force you to make a financial transaction on the spot.

Report Phishing attempts. If you receive a call, text or email of this nature and have not lost money, report this as a phishing attempt to Action Fraud.