Text alerts from banks are something many people will be familiar with, often helping them to keep track of their money. Worryingly, scammers are now attempting to cash in on this.
There have been many reports of people receiving suspicious text messages, with some taking to Twitter to warn others.
Several have seen fraudsters pretend to be from HSBC, when in fact they have nothing to do with the bank whatsoever.
“Another new scam ladies and gentlemen…..please be careful…..and whatever you do …..DON’T press verify…….I’m not even banking with @HSBC_UK …..any doubts for your own account…..contact your bank personally ….never by text,”(sic) wrote one person.
They also posted a screenshot of the message they were referring to.
It began: “HSBC: A New Payee request was created from an unrecognised device.”
The message went on to claim a person could “authorise or cancel the request” via a link which was included in the text message.
However, HSBC has confirmed this is most certainly not legitimate, and recipients shouldn’t click the link.
“That’s definitely a Scam/Phishing message, please ignore it and cancel it,” a member of staff confirmed via the verified HSBC UK Twitter account.
“If you want you can report this and similar messages to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks.”
Another person shared their own experience, urging people not to click on the link.
“Watch out for scams like this. Never click on the link. If in doubt ring the bank,” the Twitter user commented.
They also posted a screenshot of the text they had received.
“HSBC ALERT: A request for NEW payee MR R SINGH has been made on your account,” it started.
The message then tells the recipient to visit a specified link, “if this was NOT done by you”.
“Hi there – Thank you for reaching out to us and it’s definitely a scam,” HSBC UK responded.
“If you ever get similar texts, please refer to the below link,” they added, directing the Twitter user to the text message section of HSBC UK’s security centre on the bank’s website.
This guide includes information on the types of message which HSBC may send customers.
It also highlights some typical fraudster messages.
“If you receive something like this, please delete the message and do not respond,” says HSBC UK.
The bank added: “Scammers often send fake text messages that look like they’ve come from your bank, or another trusted organisation.
“Their goal is to get you to reply with your personal or financial information.”
The bank said the scammers will often encourage people to take “urgent” action.
They may also ask victims to verify new payees, transactions or devices.
Another warning is that they can look similar to real messages, and potentially even show up in the same thread as genuine messages which may have been received.