Po­lice warn­ing over hoax tax of­fice calls

Macclesfield Express - - BEFORE THE BENCH -

PO­LICE are warn­ing res­i­dents to be vig­i­lant af­ter Macclesfield res­i­dents were tar­geted by hoax calls from peo­ple claim­ing to be from the tax of­fice.

There were 10 re­ports of scam­mers pur­port­ing to be from Her Majesty’s Rev­enue and Cus­toms (HMRC) on Tues­day, Oc­to­ber 25.

The first part of the call is au­to­mated and the vic­tim is asked to press one to speak to an ad­vi­sor. The vic­tim is then in­formed they are be­ing in­ves­ti­gated by HMRC and that some­one is on their way to ar­rest them.

One of the vic­tims was told to pur­chase £500 worth of iTunes vouch­ers and that some­one would be around to col­lect the vouch­ers which would set­tle an out­stand­ing debt.

Det Insp Claire Jes­son said: “None of the vic­tims fell for the scam, but be­ing told they were about to be ar­rested must have given them a shock. This is one of a va­ri­ety of meth­ods fraud­sters are us­ing while claim­ing to be from HMRC. Fraud­sters are con­tact­ing vic­tims via voice­mails, spoofed calls and text mes­sag­ing.

“If you are con­tacted via th­ese meth­ods, please be aware that HMRC would never use texts to tell you about a tax re­bate or penalty, or ever ask for pay­ment via iTunes.

“Tele­phone num­bers and text mes­sages can eas­ily be spoofed. You should never trust the num­ber you see on your tele­phone dis­play.

“If you re­ceive a sus­pi­cious call end it im­me­di­ately.”

Any­one who be­lieves they have been con­tacted fraud­u­lently or have been a vic­tim of fraud should call Cheshire Po­lice on 101 and Ac­tion Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

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