What does it look like?

We've written this story to show you how scammers trick people. It describes common tactics we know scammers use, based on insights from our fraud and scams team.

The wedding invoice scam

Sam and Taylor were planning their wedding. Everything was in place, and they had just a few final details to confirm with the venue. They'd already paid a deposit, and knew they'd get an invoice for the balance closer to the wedding. 

They got the invoice by email. It explained that different accounts were used to hold deposits and balance payments, and gave new payment details. The email also explained that the payment needed to be made as soon as possible to secure the dates, as there had been lots of other interest.

Sam and Taylor didn’t want to lose their booking – it was the final step to completing their plans. They paid the balance as quickly as possible, following the instructions from the email.

A week later, they got another email from the venue asking them to pay the balance for their booking. The called the venue to confirm they'd already paid, but the venue didn’t know anything about the first email. and didn’t have their money.

What's the scam?

A scammer had learned that Sam and Taylor had a booking at the venue, and sent a fake invoice. They'd faked the official email address to make it more convincing.

Sam and Taylor thought they were sending the money to the venue's payment account, but they had sent it to the scammer and lost all their savings.