The Devil's in your Details online

Online fraudsters will often try:

Sending emails from fake accounts that appear to be from someone reputable (your bank, mobile phone provider, gas company, etc.) and ask you to follow web links or to call phone numbers.

  • Pointing you towards fake websites that closely mimic official sites, but that steal any data or personal information you put into them.
  • Tempting you with sales, offers and deals for incredibly cheap products or services - remember if an offer looks too good to be true then it probably is.
  • Getting your attention through fake online competitions that require you only to fill out a form or answer an extremely easy question to enter.
  • Tricking you into downloading malicious software that then collects and shares all the personal information stored on your computer.

Stay S.A.F.E

  • Suspect anything or anyone you don’t know – no matter what or who they claim to be.
  • Ask questions. Whatever a fraudster tries, you have the power to stay in control.
  • Find out for certain who you’re dealing with. Challenge anything that seems suspect.
  • End situations that make you feel uncomfortable. If you feel threatened, contact the police.

And don’t forget..

  • Always check the web address (url) of sites that ask you to enter personal details. Misspelled company names (e.g., instead of can be set up to steal data and identities.
  • Be particularly security-conscious if you are using a public computer or public Wi-Fi internet connection. Never enter personal information (date of birth, address, etc.) or passwords unless you are certain of a site’s security and authenticity.
  • Always learn the security features of your internet browser. For example, a locked-padlock symbol in the address bar is when a site is verified as safe. When double clicked/right mouse clicked, the padlock should reveal details of the site certificate which should match the organisation you think you are dealing with.
  • Always check the sender's email address – Never respond to a message from an unknown source. Know who you are dealing with – always access internet banking sites by typing the bank's address into your web browser.
  • Never go to a website from a link in an e-mail and then enter personal details as the email could be fraudulent.
  • When shopping online always sign up to American Express SafeKey, Verified by Visa and MasterCard SecureCode as well as looking for the padlock or unbroken key symbol when you first visit a site. Where possible make your purchase with a credit card or via a credible online payment system (PayPal) which protects you in the event of fraud.
  • If you think you have been a victim of banking fraud then you should contact your bank or card company immediately.