FRAUDERS Try To Steal Personal Information By Making Fake Phone Calls claiming your citizen service number will be suspended.
Warnings have been issued to thousands of Britons as phone calls attempting to falsely steal the personal information continue to be reported.
Reports from fraud calls and online scams have skyrocketed during the pandemic.
Action fraud warnings issued back in March of a particular scam, telling victims their “national insurance number has been compromised”.
The call is automated and tells victims to “press 1 to be transferred to the caller”.
If they happen to follow the instructions, victims will be pressured to give out their personal information in order to get a new social security number.
How to protect yourself from fraud
USE the following tips to protect yourself from fraudsters.
- Keep your social media accounts private – Think twice before sharing your details – especially your full date of birth, address and contact details – all this information can be useful to fraudsters.
- Deactivate and delete old social media profiles – Track your digital footprint. If a profile was created 10 years ago, personal information may currently be available to a fraudster that you do not know about or that you have forgotten.
- Password protect your devices– Keep passwords complex by choosing any three words, such as roverducklemon, and adding or splitting them with symbols, numbers and capital letters.
- Install antivirus software on your laptop and personal devices and keep it up to date – This makes it more difficult for fraudsters to access your data in the first place.
- Be careful on public Wi-Fi– Fraudsters can hack or imitate them. If you use one, avoid accessing sensitive apps, such as mobile banking.
- Also think about your offline information – Always forward your mail when you move and make sure that your letter or letterbox is properly secured.
However, this will not be the result as they have instead been linked to a criminal who now has all their personal information.
ActionFraud continues to urge the public to remain vigilant for automated calls that still attempt to scam thousands of Britons.
When the first warning was given, Pauline Smith, head of ActionFraud, said: “It’s important to remember that being approached by someone asking for your personal or financial information could be a scam.”
Even when it comes to confirming personal information such as your email address, date of birth or your mother’s maiden name, criminals can use the information to commit fraud.
It is also important not to provide your citizen service number if you do not trust the source of the call.
The crime center wants to make it clear that if you are in any doubt about what is being asked of you, you should hang up the phone.
It is highly unlikely that a legitimate organization will rush or pressure you to disclose these details.
ActionFraud has already received more than 34,000 calls and complaints related to the scam this year compared to last year.
It’s because there are reports of hundreds of other scams, including one claim HMRC. to be trying to steal your tax credit details, and another centered around fake texts from Royal Mail.
A National Insurance number will be sent to everyone in the UK around the time they turn 16 so they can apply and be identified by HMRC and the DWP.
The crime hotline outlined some ways you can protect yourself if you unexpectedly receive a phone call, text, or email asking for your personal or financial information.
They said you should always remember to pause and think before parting with your money or information.
They also said they would consider challenging if the request is bogus, making it clear that it’s okay to reject, deny or ignore anyone who asks for your information or unusual money.
If you believe you have been scammed into providing personal information to someone over the phone, you should immediately contact your bank, mortgage lender and credit card company.
You can also report it to ActionFraud through their website or by calling 0300 123 2040.
People think that one in three Brits have been scammed and handed over personal details.
In the first two months of last year’s lockdown, criminals defrauded Britons nearly £5million scam related to the pandemic.
Even Lidl has had to warn shoppers about a email scam regarding gift cards.