Fraudsters have turned their efforts away from banks and are increasingly targeting individuals directly. Their approach can be sophisticated, but their aim is always for financial gain. Please be mindful of disclosing any personal information and always consider the necessity of doing so.
If you think that you may have been targeted, please call the bank immediately on 020 7353 4522. There will always be someone available to take your call. Before dialling, please make sure that you are definitely using the official bank phone number. If you do not know who you are talking to, or there is reason to suspect that the provider is not who they claim to be, do not disclose your banking security credentials, or other personal or financial information.
The industry continues to see an increase in cash machine (ATM) scams. Fraudsters may use discreet cameras to record your four-digit PIN, or tamper with a machine to cause it to retain your bank card which is later retrieved by the fraudster. We advise you to remain vigilant when using cash machines and when entering your PIN, always cover the keypad with your free hand. If your card is ever retained by a cash machine, please call the bank immediately.
The bank advises you not to respond to unsolicited communications. Fraudsters may try to impersonate an organisation you trust such as C. Hoare & Co. or the Metropolitan Police. You should always question why these trusted organisations are contacting you and whether they have contacted you in a way you would expect.
Fraudsters may try to the use the following tricks:
- Phishing - unsolicited emails or websites which may expose you to malware through links or attachments.
- Vishing - unsolicited telephone calls which may ask you to initiate fraudulent instructions.
- Smishing - unsolicited text messages which may include internet links containing malware.
To avoid being tricked, you should look out for the following false pretences:
- Timing the communications with public events, for example, offering compensation for a well-publicised corporate data breach.
- Pretending to be helpful, for example, asking to remotely fix a problem on your computer when you have not called a company to report a problem.
- Using fear against you, for example, tricking you by saying there has been fraud on your account so that you will not question the authenticity of the call.
- Pressure, for example, rushing you to make a decision or they threaten that the account will be suspended.
A fraudster could also send a text message pretending to be from the bank. The message may ask you to call the bank on a given phone number which could turn out to be a rogue number, enabling the fraudster to listen in to the call.
Another possible scenario could involve a fraudster creating a social media account which impersonates someone you know. The fraudster may then attempt to scam you under this new account, such as sending links which contain malware or asking for funds.
General Fraud Information
C. Hoare & Co. has no control over and takes no responsibility for the security or content of the suggested further reading links.