Updated: Aug 24
There are many different types of email scams out there and and it can be hard to know what is a scam and what isn't. However, there are ways to reduce your risk of getting scammed.
How to spot a scam email
Scam emails can look genuine and appear to be from official places like a bank or TV Licensing, but you can often tell it’s a scam. Look out for:
errors in the spelling or grammar, or an unusual style of writing.
requests for personal information, such as your username, full password or bank details – genuine organisations will never ask for this information like this over email.
a sense of urgency, threatening that unless you act now, a deal will expire or your account closed.
What should I do if I think something is a scam?
Ignore attachments and links in emails. Don't open any attachments to an email unless you know they're from someone you know and trust, and that they definitely sent the email. Don't click on links within emails that claim to direct you to your bank, utility company or HMRC. Always search for the website yourself instead.
Don't reply. Never reply to scam emails, even to say 'No'. This will let the scammer know that your email address is active, and they'll send you more emails.
Think twice before sharing any details. Organisations shouldn't contact you out of the blue asking for your full password or for financial information. Never be pressured into sharing personal or financial details.
Double-check. If you get an unexpected request for payment from someone claiming to be a trusted company, look up their phone number and give them a call to check.
Stay virus-free. Make sure you have anti-virus software installed on your computer to protect it from viruses.
Mark emails as spam: Mark the email as spam through your email provider. This will delete the email and will stop emails from that address from entering your inbox in the future.
Report and delete. Report scam emails to Action Fraud, then make sure you delete the email. https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/
One doing the rounds currently is an email scam from TV Licensing.
You can see an example of a scam TV license email below
Be Scam Aware, by signing up for the Which? scam alert service