HMRC Scam Tax Refund

Some time ago I received an HMRC phishing email leading to an HMRC phishing website. It was apparent from the HMRC phishing email this was a scam.


HMRC stands for Her Majestys Revenue and Customs, it is the United Kingdoms’ tax authority. The UK tax organisation is responsible for collecting taxes throughout the UK. Like most government organisations it is a favourite for scams and phishing attempts.

HMRC Phishing Email

The scam starts with an HMRC phishing email or text message. In this particular case, it was a phishing email. The wording and layout of the email are poor and is certainly not a very good phishing HMRC email.

Let’s look at the phishing email:

HMRC Phishing Email
HMRC Phishing Email Example

As shown above, the email is a bad attempt at an HMRC tax refund scam. I have historically seen a lot better HMRC phishing emails.

HMRC Phishing Website

The phishing email takes me straight to the HMRC phishing website. The tax refund scam website was an improvement from the email. In terms of looks and quality, it did look the part at least.

The first page on the HMRC phishing website informs me I have a tax refund of £4827.30. I noticed this has risen as the refund email stated £520.

HMRC Phishing Website - Tax Refund Scam
HMRC Phishing Website – Fake Tax Refund

Please note the URLs used in the phishing website pictures. This is an easy way to tell if the website is genuine or not. The pictures show the URL as which is certainly not the HMRC official website.

HMRC Refund Scam – Personal Details

The next picture from the HMRC tax refund scam site asks for my personal details. If you suspect you may be on a phishing website, do not input any details.

Specifically, the HMRC phishing website asks for:

  • Name
  • Date of Birth
  • Address
  • Postcode
  • Mobile Number
  • Mothers Maiden Name
HMRC Refund Scam website - phishing
Personal details UK tax refund scam - HMRC phishing
Personal Details Page – UK Tax Refund Scam

HMRC Tax Refund Scam – Banking Details

Next, the HMRC phishing scam site asks for banking details from victims. Again it’s important not to enter any details into websites like this. The fraudulent site asks for:

  • Name on Credit/Debit Card
  • Card Number
  • Date Of Birth
  • Bank Account Number
  • Bank Sort Code
Financial details HMRC phishing wesbite
HMRC Scam Financial Details

A mistake was made by the scammer on the above page instead of the expiry date of the card, it asks for my date of birth again.

HMRC Tax Scam – Refund Complete

The final page of the HMRC phishing website informs victims that the refund is complete. Effectively the scammer has the victim’s personal details and financial information at this point.

HMRC Scam Tax Refund
UK Tax Refund Scam Success

Conclusion – HMRC Phishing Site

As shown in the above pictures there are errors on most pages and if you read the information correctly it does not make sense. The final page states “you will be contacted through phone regarding them”.

HMRC advises not to reply to any text message or emails claiming you have a tax refund. Any suspicious text messages can be sent to 60599.

Suspicious HMRC emails can be forwarded to [email protected] before deleting them.

Reporting phishing websites can prevent others from being scammed. The NCSC has the ability to get sites taken offline swiftly. Phishing websites can additionally be reported to the main search engines on the links below:

In my experience, the search engines are generally pretty fast at implementing warnings on phishing websites.

Phishing and Scam Content

If this post has helped you or you have been the victim of a similar scam please let us know in the comments section below.

Additionally, if you have enjoyed reading this further examples can be found in the Scams and Phishing sections.

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