Alert over scam tax rebate emails
Consumers have been warned to be on their guard against fraudulent emails which claim to be from the taxman telling them they are in line for a refund.
HM Revenue -amp; Customs said there had been a surge in emails that try to trick people into disclosing their account information, in the run-up to the deadline for renewing tax credits.
Since the beginning of April, more than 46,000 people have reported receiving one of the emails, while HMRC has been involved in shutting down more than 150 scam websites.
In the emails, fraudsters tell people they are in line for a tax rebate. It asks them to click on a link which takes them through to a cloned replica of HMRC's website, where they are asked to enter their credit or debit card details.
The fraudsters empty people's accounts before selling on their details to other criminals.
HMRC advise people to contact firstname.lastname@example.org before deleting any suspicious emails.