Beware of VAT Bank Details Fraud: Protect Your Business - Wright Vigar
 In Advice, Blog, News

In recent months, HMRC has issued warnings about fraudulent attempts related to VAT (Value Added Tax) bank details. Scammers are exploiting a specific form—Form VAT 484—to gain unauthorised access to businesses’ VAT repayments. As a business owner, it’s crucial to stay informed and take necessary precautions.

The Scam

The fraudulent activity primarily targets businesses eligible for VAT repayments. Here’s how the scam works:

  1. Form VAT 484: This form allows businesses to update their VAT details with HMRC. It includes information such as contact details, return dates, and crucially, bank account information.
  2. Exploitation: Scammers submit fake VAT 484 forms, altering the bank details to redirect VAT repayments to their own accounts. Some businesses have fallen victim to this deception, resulting in financial losses.

Protecting Your Business

To safeguard your business against VAT bank details fraud, consider the following steps:

  1. Verify Bank Details: Regularly review the bank details listed in your business’s tax account. Ensure they are accurate and haven’t been tampered with. If you notice any discrepancies, investigate promptly.
  2. Confirm Repayments: If your business is eligible for VAT repayments, verify that you receive the expected amounts. Unexpected changes could signal fraudulent activity.
  3. Stay Vigilant: While repayment traders are the primary targets, businesses in payment positions have also been affected. Regardless of your VAT status, remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity.

Reporting Suspected Fraud

If you encounter anything suspicious related to VAT repayments, report it immediately. By acting promptly, you can prevent further harm to your business.

VAT bank details fraud is a serious threat, but with awareness and vigilance, you can protect your business. Stay informed, verify your details, and report any anomalies promptly.

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