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Tax Refund Scams Targeting iPhones

Published by Prerana
Posted Date: May 25, 2024 , Modified Date: May 24, 2024

Scam calls and fraudulent text messages are not uncommon in the UK. But recently, the number of scam calls and texts has surged, especially those regarding tax refunds. And a majority of these calls and scams have been directed at iPhone users.

How Are Scammers Targeting iPhone Users?

iPhone users are getting text messages telling them they can claim a tax refund, and these text messages cannot be blocked because they supposedly come from a business account.

It is no secret that scammers purchase or steal legitimate Apple accounts and send messages that appear credible. This tactic not only increases the likelihood of the messages reaching the target group but also makes it challenging for recipients to discern their authenticity.

tax refund scam

Fraudulent texts often contain links that look like official government sites. They aim to trick people into sharing personal information or making urgent financial transfers.

According to the HMRC, these scams also happen through emails, phone calls, WhatsApp messages, social media, and even QR codes. Using so many platforms increases the chances of tricking victims present on different communication channels. This also makes it harder for people to tell if the messages are real or fake.

What is the Current Situation?

As per the HMRC, the number of tax refund scams has gone up sharply, with 79,000 reported in the 12 months leading up to January, compared to 58,000 the previous year. Fraud in 2023 resulted in £1.17 billion being stolen, equalling £3.2 million per day. Unfortunately, the victims could only get back 64p for every £1 stolen.

To avoid losing money to such scammers, HMRC advises people to remain cautious and follow official guidelines. An HMRC spokesperson emphasised the importance of staying alert and checking HMRC’s advice on GOV.UK. Also, be aware that HMRC will never notify individuals of a tax rebate or request personal information via text messages or phone calls.

If you suspect you have received a fraudulent message or experienced financial loss, report it to Action Fraud immediately and use the dedicated phishing email provided by the HMRC to alert the authorities.


The rate of scams and fraudulent text messages has been increasing in the UK every year. Now, scammers are targeting iPhone users, claiming they are owed tax refunds. So, HMRC has advised people not to fall for these scams as the tax authority will not threaten people about unpaid taxes or any other subject matter.

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