TV Licence scam warning over fakes messages and websites

TV Licensing offer advice on avoiding scams

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Scammers have various ploys they use to try and trick people into sending information, including text and emails, or calling individuals. They may even send a letter in the post or come to a person’s doorstep purporting to be from TV Licensing.

The most common TV Licence scams are sent over email, according to older people’s charity Age UK.

These phishing emails may say the person is entitled to a refund for an overpayment or will say that their licence is about to expire.

The recipient is then asked to respond by entering their personal details or bank account information on a fake website.

The TV Licensing website states: “Scam emails often tell you that you need to make an urgent payment.

“We only email customers about payments if they have missed one. You can sign in to your account to check.

“They often say you can get a refund or a cheaper licence. We will never do this unless you have contacted us about a refund and we are replying to you.”

The bogus email may feature the TV Licensing logo in a bid to make it look authentic, but there are signs to look out for that an email is not legitimate.

Messages from an unusual address, such as a personal account, should be treated with suspicion.

The TV Licensing organisation will use donotreply@tvlicensing.co.uk or donotreply@spp.tvlicensing.co.uk in its emails.

The group also includes the person’s name and part of their postcode in its messages, according to the organisation’s website.

Another sign of a fake email is if it doesn’t include the person’s name or has an incorrect account number.

Spelling or grammar mistakes are another sign of a scam email. They may also have an unusually casual or overly formal tone which is inconsistent with the group’s style.

Colours or styles within the message that differ from normal TV Licensing emails are another sign to look out for.

If a person receives a suspicious email, they should delete it immediately and avoid clicking on any links or replying with any details.

They can also report the phishing email to Action Fraud, a national reporting agency for fraud and cyber crime.

Not all reports will be investigated by the group, but each report helps the agency understand the scale of the problem and the common scam emails that fraudsters are sending out.

If a person is still unsure what to do, they can also contact the TV Licensing company directly via the group’s website.

People can easily be taken in by these scams, and victims can take action to secure their money.

If a person thinks they have lost money to a fraud, they can contact their bank or building society, who can cancel their cards or freeze their account.

A victim can also report the scam to Action Fraud on the group’s website or by calling 0300 123 0240.

People can also contact Age UK by calling the free advice line, on 0800 678 1602, which is open every day from 8am to 7pm.

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