Halifax is flocked to by millions of Britons each year for savings, mortgages and other financial products. The bank has a trusted name, but unfortunately being aware of this means scammers can seek to exploit it. A number of people have reported receiving a text which purports to be from the provider, informing them of an issue with their account.
Many will want to secure their account to make sure it is not being targeted and they do not lose money.
However, ironically, by clicking the link, Britons could end up doing the exact opposite.
Links such as these often redirect individuals to an official looking website which “spoofs” that of their bank.
Feeling comfortable, a person may be happy to input their personal or login details to supposedly secure their account.
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But this webpage is simply a way for scammers to harvest personal details and use it for unscrupulous purposes.
Britons may be inadvertently providing fraudsters with a window into their bank account, which could then be cleared out as cybercriminals commit identity fraud.
One person sounded the alarm on the scam, taking to social media to write: “Yet another scam doing the rounds. I don’t even have a Halifax account!”
And another simply said: “Halifax scam – do not fall for it!”
Showing the potential for all Britons, not just Halifax customers, to be targeted by such a scam, individuals have been warned to be cautious.
Halifax stepped in, issuing an alert via social media, explaining: “Scam messages use links to get your personal and banking details, or to put a virus on your device.”
The bank also referenced how a news reporter from Northamptonshire fell for a similar scam, filling out a fake online form with his details.
Once he realised and challenged the scammer on a later phone call, the fraudster became abusive, threatening the reporter over the phone.
As a result, it took the time to warn Britons about the potential for being targeted, and how to stay alert.
Firstly, if a text like this is received, it is important never to click on the link contained within.
Individuals should never reply, and instead delete the message and block the number if at all possible.
Real texts from Halifax, the bank confirms, will always include part of a person’s name, their account number and postcode.
Consequently, if this kind of information is not contained within a text message, Britons can be fairly sure it is a scam.
The bank also states scam texts can often look odd, with poor spelling and grammar, and a messy layout.
It will never text individuals to make a test payment online, or to move money to a new sort code and account number.
Those who receive a scam text message are encouraged to report it to their phone provider by forwarding the message, free of charge, to 7726.