Action Fraud warning of criminals targeting people with Universal Credit scam
Action Fraud has released a warning of a scam targeting people with offers of “low cost” loans or “free” government grants.
Action Fraud has received 63 reports about these scams.
The victims are not told that the money they will receive is actually an advance payment for Universal Credit.
The criminals use the personal information they’ve obtained under false pretences to make an application in the victim’s name and after the fraudsters have taken their “fee” from the advance payment, the victim is then left to pay back the total amount once their repayments begin.Action Fraud has released ways people can protect themselves
They advise the public to never share your personal or financial information with someone you don’t know and trust, especially if it’s in response to an offer of “free money” or a “free grant” as in these particular cases.
It should be noted that Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) staff will never approach you in the street or ask for your personal or financial details over social media.
If anyone has any concerns about their benefits, they are advised to visit www.gov.uk/contact-jobcentre-plus online.
If anyone suspects that their identity may have been stolen, they can check their credit rating quickly and easily online.
Action Fraud say that people should check their credit rating every few months whether they have suspicions or not, using a reputable service provider. It is important to follow up on any unexpected or suspicious results that may appear when doing this.