Don’t be ‘April’ fooled by scammers

Statistics show that the crime you’re most likely to fall victim to this year is fraud according to the latest annual crime survey conducted by the Office of National Statistics. That’s why it is important that you stay alert to make sure you’re  not “fooled” by fraudsters.

According to Which? magazine, impersonation scams accounted for the majority of scams with fraudsters most commonly pretending to be from banks, household brands, the NHS and government departments. Phone, text and email were the preferred methods used by scammers to con victims.

The biggest scams during 2021 include:

1. ‘There’s a problem with your Amazon account.  This scam continues to do the rounds and people targets people through phone calls threatening to close your account if you don’t act quickly. Amazon never call customers like this, unless it relates to an issue you’ve raised.  Amazon phishing scams are also rife.

There are a variety of different warnings scammers might send to trick you into clicking links that lead to fake Amazon sites. Usually, they claim your payment details need updating or include a fabricated invoice for something expensive that you didn’t order, in an attempt to worry you. You can usually spot these phishing attempts by checking to see if the email is not addressed to you personally, or the invoice is in a foreign currency. Always sign in to your Amazon account from a new browser window to check orders and payment details rather than clicking on links in emails. It can take longer, but it’s safer.

2. ‘Your National Insurance number has been compromised’  Sternly worded warning from the National Crime Agency via email or over the phone may sound serious and the call often tells the recipient to “press 1 to be connected to an agent”.  Don’t do it!  This takes you a hotline to a scammer who will try to extract information and bank details from you.   If you do receive a call and have concerns about your income tax or your National Insurance Number contact HMRC directly to put your mind at ease.

3.  ‘You’ve missed a delivery The most common text message scams were warnings about missed deliveries or outstanding delivery charges. The delivery company most impersonated was Royal Mail, followed by Hermes and DPD. The text message will typically ask for payment of an ‘unpaid shipping fee’   These fake texts have a more sinister motive. Once they’ve conned you into handing over your details, scammers target you with other scams, using the details you’ve handed over to gain your trust.

5. Online ads and social media scams.  There’s a high chance you’ve been targeted by at least one of these scams in the past year. Online scams also featured heavily, particularly dodgy retailers advertising on social media with links to online shopping and auction sites.

6.  Social media hacks.  If you’re wondering why you’ve received a friend request from someone you’re already following, it’s likely their account has been hacked.  If in doubt, give them a call or drop them a line.  I’m sure they would like to hear from you anyway.





Don’t be fooled out of your hard earned cash or put your personal security or safety at risk.

Stay safe.

The Insurewise Team