HMRC issue scam warning
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is warning Self-Assessment customers to be on their guard following the Self-Assessment deadline after more than 570,000 scams were reported to HMRC in the last year.
Self-Assessment customers are at increased risk of falling victim to scams at this time of year, even if they don’t mention Self-Assessment. They can be taken in by scam texts, emails or calls either offering a ‘refund’ or demanding unpaid tax, thinking that they are genuine HMRC communications referring to their Self-Assessment return.
HMRC gave customers an extra month to submit a completed tax return and if customers filed by 28 February 2022, they would avoid a late filing penalty. Customers have until 1 April to pay their outstanding tax bill or set up a Time to Pay arrangement to avoid receiving a late payment penalty. Interest has been applied to all outstanding balances since 1 February.
HMRC is also reminding Self-Assessment customers to double check websites and online forms before using them to complete their 2020 to 2021 tax return. People can be taken in by misleading websites designed to make them pay for help in submitting tax returns or charging to connect them to HMRC phone lines. Customers who are in any doubt about whether a website is genuine should visit GOV.UK for more information about Self Assessment and use the free signposted tax return forms.
HMRC has a dedicated team working on cyber and phone crimes. They use innovative technologies to prevent misleading and malicious communications from ever reaching the customer. In the last 12 months (to January 2022) HMRC has: