Impersonation scams

When someone pretends to be the police, a bank, a friend or business, to convince you to send them money. 

How it could happen to you

  • You receive an email, text message or call that looks or sounds like it’s from someone you know or deal with – scammers impersonate other people and companies by making calls or text messages that look like they’re coming from a genuine number
  • They might say that they need money urgently, you’ve got an outstanding bill to pay or that your internet isn’t working. If you’ve been contacted unexpectedly, always treat it as suspicious
  • Scammers will try to rush or panic you. They might say there’s been fraud on your account and you need to move the money to protect yourself – this is a sure sign of a scam
  • Scammers can change their caller ID to disguise their real identity and make it look like someone you know is calling – known as ‘number spoofing’. If you receive messages or calls out of the blue, especially ones asking for money, always call the person back using a number you trust

Stop. Challenge. Protect.

  • Think twice before opening links in text messages and emails, especially ones that ask you to provide personal information or make a payment
  • Never give remote access to your computer following a cold call from someone
  • Nobody legitimate will ever ask you to transfer your money to a ‘safe account’ or say that ‘your money is at risk’. If this happens, it’s a scam

Investment scams

When you’re invited to invest in things that are worthless, or don’t exist.

Purchase scams

When fake or non-existent items are advertised for sale.

Advance fee scams

When fake companies ask for an upfront fee and then don’t provide the service you’ve paid for.

Invoice scams

When account details on an invoice are changed, or emails are intercepted, so the money is wrongly paid into the scammer’s account.

Romance scams

When someone pretends to be interested in a romantic relationship with you. They gain your trust and then ask for money.

Money mules

When you let someone put money into your account, which you then transfer on. You may be told you can keep some of the money for yourself. 

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How to report fraud

Think you’ve been a victim?

Get in touch with us right away if you think you’ve seen suspicious activity on your account. Here you’ll find the numbers you need, the next steps to take and what we’ll do to help. 

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Discover ways to help keep control over your personal data online.

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Take Five to stop fraud

National awareness campaign

Take Five is led by UK Finance and backed by the Government and other organisations. If you receive a phone call, text or email you think might be fake, it urges you to stop – take five – and challenge what you’re told.

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