Typically a recorded voice message plays purporting to be from the ‘UK Police’ telling you that they have received a complaint from HMRC’s tax department and that there is a warrant out for your arrest. They then give out a phone number to contact for more details.
Criminals are using HMCTS (Her Majestys Court and Tribunal Service) telephone numbers as a way to target the public by convincing them to hand over money and personal information such as national insurance numbers.
The calls impersonate HMCTS and may ask the caller to ‘press 1’ in order to speak with an advisor about unpaid fines or police warrants.
To protect yourself
- be aware that HMCTS will not contact you by using an automated message
- always take a moment to stop and think before parting with money or your personal information, it could prevent you from falling victim to fraud
- remember, it’s okay to reject, refuse or ignore any requests
- only criminals will try to rush or panic you
What to do
- if you receive a suspicious text message, report it free of charge by forwarding the message to 7726
- report suspicious calls to Action Fraud
- if you believe you have been the victim of a scam and paid money, report it to Action Fraud or telephone 0300 123 2040
- if you’re suspicious about a call you receive, you can now also call 159 to check whether you’re being targeted by scammers