Common Scams

Typical online scams to look out for

We are aware that sometimes people receive phone calls, messages, and emails from scammers pretending to be from the British Business Bank or one of our brands*.

These are criminal acts, usually aimed at encouraging the handing over of personal or financial information or even money.

It can be hard to tell if a spam text, email, or call is from a legitimate company or a scammer.

These are some typical examples of scams that look like they’re sent by British Business Bank but are in fact fraud or phishing scams.

Please don’t click on any of the links in these emails, don’t provide any personal or financial information, and be vigilant if you receive a communication which you aren’t sure about.

Tips to avoid being the victim of a scam

Don't click on any links or give out any personal, bank, or security details.

The British Business Bank will never ask you to divulge this information.

Check the email address

Is it coming from an email address that doesn't look right?

Check any phone numbers or business addresses

Often scam artists use old/incorrect information, so be sure to check the business address or phone number if they are on the email.

Absence of an address and phone number should be treated as suspicious.

Increasingly, scammers are using a practice known as ‘number spoofing’ where they change their caller ID to disguise their identity from the person they are calling.

Remember to never give out any personal, bank, or security information in response to an incoming call, or rely upon the Caller ID as the sole means of identification.

Is the email poorly worded?

Poorly or unprofessionally worded emails with many spelling or grammar mistakes are suspicious and could be a sign that the communication is fraudulent.

Do you feel like the email is intimidating you into taking urgent action?

This is a common manipulation tactic designed by scammers to get you to act without thinking.

If so, do not respond to it, responding to a scam email may feel great for a few minutes, however responding to the email, even negatively, can lead to being targeted more in the future.

Reporting a scam

If you have been the victim of a payment scam, you can get a crime reference number by reporting it to your local Police station.

If you have clicked on a link, provided any personal data like your bank account details on a website or over the phone or you’re concerned that you’ve been compromised, you should also report the scam to Action Fraud, the national fraud reporting centre.

Please note: Police Scotland (via the 101 telephone service) must be contacted for scams in or from Scotland.

To report a spam text forward the text to 7726.

You may get an automated response thanking you for the report and giving you further instructions if needed.

You will not be charged for sending texts to 7726.

An easy way to remember ‘7726' is that they are the numbers on your telephone keypad that spell out the word ‘SPAM'.

Scam example asking for transfer of funds on email

Example 1

Email subject: Transfer

Sender: BritishBusinessBank ([email protected])

The email informs the recipient that a transfer request has been placed and approved in their name because of an online auction.

Do not click on any links or enter any details.

Scam example from Gmail email informing that their account will be confiscated unless recipient transfers a sum of money

Example 2

Sender: [email protected]

This email informs the recipient that their account will be confiscated unless the recipient transfers a sum of money.

Do not click on any links or enter any details.

Scam example asking to facilitate an exchange suggesting the recipient has inherited a substantial sum of money

Example 3

Email subject: Attention: Mr. Nikhil Garg

Sender: [email protected]

This email suggests the recipient has inherited a substantial sum of money and asks for a reply to facilitate an exchange.

Visit Ofcom for more information.

*British Business Investments, British Patient Capital, Midlands Engine Investment Fund, Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Investment Fund and Start Up Loans are all brands, products, or programmes owned by the British Business Bank.