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Beware of fake tax return 2016

2 November 2017

A scam email is doing the rounds purporting to come from the Netherlands Tax and Customs Administration. Don’t fall for it.

The email informs recipients that they have fallen behind on their tax payments. Urgent action is needed, it reads. The sender of the message tries to persuade recipients to pay a relatively small amount as a start. Delete this email, it’s a scam.

Here’s an example (click to enlarge):

The message contains several red flags, making it easy for you to unmask it as the scam. They include:

  • The email asks recipients to pay in Bitcoins. Reliable organisations will never do this;
  • The message starts off with a general salutation, not a personalised greeting;
  • The senders want you to pay very quickly. The real Tax Administration would certainly give you much more time.

Individually, these features are not enough to spot the scam, but if they all appear in the same email, you can be sure of one thing: the message is fake.

Our advice: delete this email from your inbox. It is the work of scammers.