New scam targeting schools demanding the immediate payment of thousands of pounds
Cifas advising schools to ensure staff are trained to handle such requests
Cifas is warning schools to be wary of requests for payments received from unknown callers following reports of fraudsters contacting head teachers claiming a High Court Writ has been issued against them.
Targets of this scam claim that after requests for a payment of up to £3,000 were refused, the fraudsters then apply additional pressure by claiming enforcement officers would be sent to the school.
Cifas is reminding schools to ensure that staff are appropriately trained to handle such situations, and that any schools approached with this scam should ask for the information to be emailed as well as a phone number to contact them back on. Staff should not engage in further conversation.
Criminals will often look to take advantage of complex situations and will use pressure tactics to encourage victims to part with either their information or their money. Cifas research shows that fraud is increasing on a yearly basis, with 2019 seeing the highest number of cases of fraudulent conduct ever filed to the National Fraud Database. More recently, 9 in 10 fraud professionals at the Cifas Annual Conference said they believed that cases of fraudulent activity would rise even further in 2020 and 2021.
Cifas is reminding anyone who is approached out of the blue by someone asking for financial or personal information to:
Stop – take a minute and think about parting with your money or information;
Challenge – could it be fake? You can reject, refuse or ignore any requests you receive and only criminals would try to rush or panic you;
Protect – if you think you’ve fallen for a scam, contact your bank immediately and report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.