Council warns residents to be wary of tax scam

Hounslow Council is warning residents to beware of a council tax scam where criminals are posing as council staff and targeting residents to offer bogus council tax refunds or threatening fines.

Published: Wednesday, 12th June 2019

Hounslow Council is warning residents to beware of a council tax scam where criminals are posing as council staff and targeting residents to offer bogus council tax refunds or threatening fines.

The warning follows an alert from the Local Government Association that taxpayers are being hit by texts, emails and phone calls offering to claim refunds for overpayments on their behalf and demanding payment for arrears.

Another scam aims to convince people their property is in the wrong council tax band and offers to secure a refund, again in return for a payment – even though a council tax band reassessment is available for free.

The fraudsters claim to represent local councils or the Valuation Office Agency and some use government branding and phishing links.

Cllr Shantanu Rajawat, Cabinet Member for Finance, Houonslow Council, said:

“No council will ever phone, text or email residents to ask for a payment to release a council tax refund or ask for personal bank details. 

“We would advise anyone who receives a suspected scam to report it to the council on 020 8583 4242 or email curevenues@hounslow.gov.uk.”

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