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TISA response to the Financial Times article on sharp spike in HMRC coronavirus scams

June 4, 2020

The Investing and Saving Alliance response to the Financial Times article on sharp spike in HMRC coronavirus scams.

Harry Weber-Brown, Digital Innovation Director, TISA, commented: “I am deeply concerned about the sharply increasing amount of coronavirus phishing emails pretending to be from HMRC, trying to exploit vulnerable customers worried about their financial situation during this hard time. TISA has been working on a number of different initiatives that could help reduce financial fraud, such as Digital ID.

“Digital ID is a highly secure way of making it possible for people to verify their identities without the need to show physical documents. Our work in introducing Digital ID could certainly counter any cases of an individual trying to fraudulently identify themselves to an organisation and set up a new account for the purposes of money laundering, applying for a government emergency scheme or seeking credit. It could also be used to prevent consumers unwittingly giving away identity information to fraudsters if the consumer requests that the Identity Provider checks the authenticity of the organisation issuing the email.”

TISA has also been publishing bulletins for its members on combating fraud and scams during Covid-19 pandemic. They have warned people against criminals who are using Government branding to try to trick people, including reports of using HMRC branding to make spurious offers of financial support through unsolicited emails, phone calls and text messages.

The bulletins help individuals through distinguishing different fraud types, including: Online Shopping and Auction Fraud, Computer Software Fraud, Lender Loan Fraud or Pension Liberation Fraud and providing advice on how to manage them. They also include advice for businesses on approaching Mandate Fraud. 

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