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Burley and Menston Conservative CouncillorsPhishing ScamsHow to easily spot COVID and online banking scams

How to easily spot COVID and online banking scams

Online banking scams.

There are many banking and phishing scams doing the rounds on the internet, all state that there’s an issue with your account which requires an immediate action. Strangely enough, these emails always appear in your inbox at the weekend just when the banks are closed. This is not coincidence, scammers do this so that you cannot easily visit your branch or contact the call centre out of hours.

The most effective method to establish whether an email is fake or a scam is to look closely at the content. The image shows a NatWest email, which is a scam email which I had received on the 26th of June, it’s one of many received claiming to be legitimate, but there are issues. Here’s a checklist to help you identify whether it’s a scam.

  1. I don’t have a Natwest account – Bin the email straight away, do not click any links or under any circumstances respond to the email.
  2. The salutation should read Dear Mr A.B. Yourname. If the salutation reads ‘Dear Customer, Dear Valued Customer, Dear Sir or Madam or Dear,‘ it’s a scam!
  3. The ‘From‘ address may look like Natwest or Barclays, but it still may not be genuine. If the address contains as this one does @securesuite.net or @securesuite.co.uk it’s a scam. These two websites are the 3D secure platforms on which you validate your card transactions. They are not banking websites and do not receive your email address or any other personal detail.
  4. Check the grammar in the email and if it’s poor write it off as a scam. In this case the date shown is in red indicating that this is a scam. The colour red prompts us to believe that this is an urgent request, however, banks do not use colour in email copy.
  5. If there’s a link ‘Click to verify your account‘ it’s a scam. Banks will simply not request an online verification via email. The only place on which a verification is required is your banks own website platform.
  6. Hover on the link and check the link address which will be displayed if you’re using a browser for email. In this case the link does not link to the Natwest website, it links to https://rainbow-pleasant-denim.glitch.me/previous.html?/NAT_WEST_Customer.verification/error.html which is a phishing website.
Phishing email

Click to enlarge image.

Click to enlarge image.

Reporting a suspected phishing email.

If you want to help combat email scams, then simply forward any suspected phishing emails to: report@phishing.gov.uk, it’s that simple.

Be aware of a Covid Vaccine Passport scam email going around that purports to be from the NHS and informs recipients that they can apply for their “Digital Coronavirus Passports”

Clicking on the link within the email, takes you to a convincing but fake NHS website that asks for personal and payment details. (for an admin fee).
Just to reiterate, your vaccination status is obtained FREE through the NHS App, website or by calling the NHS on 119.

More information can be found on the gov.uk website;
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/demonstrating-your-covid-19-vaccination-status-when-travelling-abroad