23/03/17Email scammers hit FCA for the second time

A statement recently published by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has warned of more fake emails being sent from their official account. An earlier security breach was reported in January, with several people receiving an email titled ‘FCA Regulations 2017’. The same thing appears to have happened again, with many receiving an email with the same title from three official FCA addresses. These are:

The FCA have stated that they are currently unaware of the source, but have advised anybody who receives an email to delete it without opening it.

Common warning signs

In a statement published last year, the FCA warned of scammers using various routes to deceive the public. Caller ID spoofing was highlighted as a threat, with scammers finding a way to make the official FCA switchboard number appear to the people receiving the call.

They reiterated that under no circumstances will the FCA ask for money or bank details and people who are being targeted should never send any personal information such as payslips or passports.

If you receive suspicious communication we would recommend taking a common-sense approach; “if it’s too good to be true, it usually is”. If in doubt you should get in touch directly with the FCA.

Suspected fraudulent activity can be reported on the FCA website here, or on the consumer helpline on 0800 111 6768.

Whilst the financial watchdog has made it one of their 2016/17 priorities to tackle cyber-crime, breaches such as this are still happening, so people are advised to stay cautious.

Simple measures can be taken to keep vigilant, including:

  • Not opening emails from people you don’t know
  • Exercising caution with email attachments
  • Keeping internet security software updated
  • Reporting anything that seems odd or amiss
  • Not responding to suspected scammers in any way
  • If in doubt, calling the organisation directly on their advertised telephone number, not one contained in an email you receive

The FCA have been quick to announce the email hack, but it is not yet apparent who is behind it, and whether or not they will strike again.