Highland Trading Standards warns of fraudulent refund emails

Phishing email example
Example of phishing email

Highland Council Trading Standards are warning consumers to be on their guard against ‘phishing’ emails purporting to be from Apple iTunes following an increase in enquiries.

The unsolicited email from fraudsters informs the recipient that they if they did not make the purchase in question, that they should click on the link provided to obtain a refund.   The recipient is then redirected to a fraudulent web page, and asked to complete information such as debit payment card details in order to have this amount refunded to their account.

Unfortunately, once completed the recipient could find that they have inadvertently entered their details to a malicious web page that is being used to harvest personal details, most likely in order to access a consumer’s bank account.

In common with good practice across the industry, Apple will never ask you to provide sensitive account information (such as passwords or payment details) via email.

If you are concerned about an email receipt from Apple you can log into your own iTunes account (independent of the link contained within the email) and check your account statement and transactions therein. Concerned consumers can also contact Apple via their official site at: http://www.apple.com/uk/

Suspect emails can be forwarded to Apple using the following email address: reportphishing@apple.com

Potential victims of the scam email (those who may have completed the fraudulent web form) should contact their bank immediately and not use online banking services until confirmation that their device has not been compromised by malware can be confirmed.

Consumers can also contact Police Scotland on 101 if they feel they may be a victim of this fraud.

Highland Council Trading Standards advise all consumers to be vigilant when responding to unsolicited emails received.   Consumers can take steps themselves by purchasing a good detection package with a SPAM filter that automatically deletes suspect emails or puts them in a separate folder.

Consumers can speak to an advisor from the Citizens Advice Consumer Service (frontline telephone consumer advice service) 03454 04 05 06 or visit or write to:  The Highland Council Trading Standards Service, 38 Harbour Road, Inverness IV1 1UF

For further Highland Trading Standards news please go to www.highland.gov.uk/tradingstandardsnews or follow us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/HCTradingStandards

Highland Trading Standards Service is part of Development and Infrastructure Service, The Highland Council, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness.

26 Nov 2015