How to protect yourself

Scammers manipulate people by “pushing their buttons” to produce the response they want. To stop scammers pulling you into their traps you need to know how to avoid them and prevent the responses they expect

How to protect yourself from being scammed

How to protect yourself from being scammed

Your personal and financial information is invaluable so make sure you protect it using the tips below.

Tip 1: Don’t make it easy for fraudsters, be wary who you give your personal information to and how

  • be careful what you say about yourself on social media
    • set your privacy settings
    • keep your media profiles, such as Facebook and LinkedIn to a minimum (your name) and don’t post your address or date of birth
  • be very cautious about giving out personal information on the phone to people you don’t know 
  • make sure nobody can look over your shoulder when banking, shopping or doing online transactions.

Tip 2: Make it as difficult as possible to crack your personal passwords

Take a look at this short video from leading law enforcement and financial organisations for top tips on creating strong passwords.

Remember the more complex and unique to you your password is the harder it is to crack. 

Tip 3: Always destroy or securely store personal documents

  • after checking your bank and financial statements carefully and report anything suspicious. Either securely store or destroy them along with any other personal documents
  • if you have a communal mailbox or one in a shared area, empty it frequently
  • if you move home set up a redirection with Royal Mail for at least a year and notify your bank, credit card companies and other organisations you deal with ASAP . 

Tip 4: Be suspicious of unsolicited phone calls or emails

Fraudsters are increasingly targeting people over the telephone, posing as bank staff, police officers and other officials including BT employees to extract personal and financial information. Often the fraudster will claim there has been fraud on your account and that you need to take action.

Your bank, the police or BT will never:

  • ask for your 4-digit card PIN or your online banking password
  • ask you to transfer money to a new account for fraud reasons
  • ask for your payment card details over email or Live Chat
  • send someone to your home to collect your cash, PIN, payment card or cheque book if you are a victim of fraud

Tip 5: Protect your personal devices

  • protect all of your internet connected devices – computer, tablet, TV, mobile phone – by installing internet security software and keep it up-to-date
  • make sure access to your devices are password protected.
  • If you’re concerned about your BT account security, please go to

Tip 6: Keep an eye on your credit rating

Your credit report it is one of the first places you can spot if someone is misusing your personal information – before you suffer financial loss – so it is a good idea to keep an eye on it.

As well as credit reference agencies who offer subscription services, some companies like ClearScore and noddle offer free credit reports and contact you with regular updates so you can see what accounts are open in your name and who is searching your credit score.

Act now to protect yourself from falling victim to fraud and cyber crime.

Take theFraud Defence Test. The test, developed by City of London Police and built with funding from the Home Office’s Police Innovation Fund, takes just a couple of minutes and is designed to help you understand how you could become a victim of fraud in relation to your circumstances and knowledge of fraud.


Protect yourself from identity fraud

Have you ever been a victim of fraud? Has an organisation you deal with recently lost or leaked sensitive data? Have you recently lost any personal documents, or had them stolen?

Cifas Protective Registration reduces that risk.

Take five to stop fraud

Take time to stop, step back and think before you act.

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