Another day and another scam is doing the rounds. Recently, a scam which is aimed at obtaining people’s National Insurance number has been reported; with victims receiving an automated telephone call stating that their National Insurance number has been compromised.
The automated message commands the person to get a new number by pressing 1 on their phone. When they do this, they are connected to a fraudster who requests personal details from them, supposedly in order to receive a new NI number. The fraudster will then use the personal details they have obtained to commit fraud.
Usually, this will be to try and get financial gain, such as accessing your bank account, setting up bank accounts to launder money or even taking out loans in your name.
At least 1,000 people in the UK have been targeted by this scam so far, with Action Fraud being inundated with calls reporting that they had been targeted with this type of scam.
Head of Action Fraud, Pauline Smith has provided the following update and advice:
“We are asking the public to remain vigilant and be cautious of any automated calls they receive mentioning their National Insurance number becoming compromised.
“It’s important to remember if you’re contacted out the blue by someone asking for your personal or financial details, this could be a scam.
“Even confirming personal details, such as your email address, date of birth or mother’s maiden name, can be used by criminals to commit fraud. If you have any doubts about what is being asked of you, hang up the phone. No legitimate organisation will rush or pressure you.”
Protecting yourself from fraud
Unexpected phone calls should always be treated with caution and you should never provide personal information to anyone that you are not expecting a call from. Fraudsters can be very sophisticated, using the language and call structure that you might expect from your bank, so you should be very vigilant, even with callers that sound legitimate.
What to do if you have been targeted
If you have been a victim of this scam, or a similar one, you should contact your bank to make them aware and you should report the call to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.