Ofgem issues warning over scam energy support messages

Customers have received fake emails and texts promising discounts on energy bills

Big Zero Report 2022

The energy regulator has warned over a number of scam messages circulating claiming to offer discounts on energy bills.

It has been reported that more than 1,500 reports have been made to the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau about scam emails purporting to be from Ofgem about energy rebates.

Ofgem has asked energy suppliers to be clearer on potential customer fraud on their websites.

Kevin Curran, IEEE Senior Member and Professor of Cybersecurity at the University of Ulster, said: “Phishing attacks remain a big problem. Many are designed to be effective in these environments by targeting large numbers of people with energy bill-related claims.

“These attacks use tailored techniques, dynamic websites, and regularly update the methods used. The result is a series of attacks that have an alarmingly high success rate, yet a relatively low detection rate. It’s important to be cautious – unsolicited communications that ask for data or refer to pages asking for personal data should be carefully checked.

“It is best practice to avoid clicking on links or downloading attachments from suspicious emails altogether. For those who are concerned that they have been caught out by the attackers, they should review online accounts regularly, this helps to flag signs of fraud or rogue charges. Banks are good at spotting fraud but, ultimately, it’s up to the individual to spot fraud on their account.”

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