It's easy to let down our guard at this time of the year thinking about last-minute Christmas shopping, celebrating the festivities, and getting through the last few weeks of work. But that's when scammers can pounce; Christmas is a prime time when there is a surge in impersonation scams.
Impersonating someone else to gain personal information such as bank account and NI numbers or other sensitive details can open you up to fraudulent activity. Scams are becoming highly sophisticated and quickly evolving, making them difficult to detect.
Here's a timely reminder of what to look out for.
Email attachments are a popular way for scammers to gain your personal data, especially if they're posing to be your Bank or online merchant with which you have an account. The pdf attachments contain fraudulent links asking you to update your account, payment information or login details. But generally, your Bank or other online merchants won't ask for that information via email.
Make sure you review the links – how are they spelt? Does it contain a lot of jumbled letters and numbers? If you're in any doubt, contact the sender before clicking on any links.
Always check the senders' email address – this can be a red flag. It may be common to receive emails from high street stores, but does their email reflect their proper name – 'and' maybe changed to '&', for example? It's a simple adjustment, yet our eyes can easily deceive us!
Similarly, don't click on any links received via text message if you're unsure of the sender. With online shopping a big part of our everyday lives, it's easy to be blindsided by texts claiming to be from the postal service asking for updated delivery details or additional postage before the parcel is released.
Be wary of anyone asking you to take action now. Scammers love to create urgency, putting the fear in you that XYZ will happen if you don't act now. Don't fall for it!
If you have any concerns, please do get in touch. We support businesses with all IT requirements across Crawley, Gatwick, and the West Sussex region.