Coronavirus: protecting yourself from fraud

As the coronavirus outbreak continues to impact our communities it’s an anxious time for everyone. We are keeping a close eye on the situation and have put measures in place to support you during this time.

If you’re a customer and have questions you can find out more here.

Protect yourself from fraud
Unfortunately, criminals are using the outbreak to trick people into sharing personal and financial details.

Types of specific coronavirus scams to look out for:
  • Emails from online retailers offering vaccines against contracting coronavirus or protection equipment that doesn’t exist
  • Strangers visiting you offering to do your shopping whilst you are in isolation. They will attempt to get access to your bank card and PIN or they may ask you for cash
  • Money making schemes that appear genuine but involve money going through your bank account.  These are money mule scams criminals use to move their money through your bank account
  • Cold callers pretending to be from your bank or government authorities, offering tax relief, financial assistance or requesting that tax is paid
  • Advance Fee schemes where you’re asked to pay an upfront fee to get money you are owed.  This could be a refund on travel plans you’ve had to cancel under travel restrictions
  • Rogue traders cold calling at your door offering services to protect you from the virus
  • Fake friends. Scammers who develop relationships online and build trust. They then ask for money to pay for coronavirus-related issues such as protection equipment, medical bills or everyday essential items
  • We will never phone or email you and ask for all your personal information
  • We will never email asking for account information or your personal security details
  • We will never ask you to move money to a safe account
  • Never give your card or PIN to anyone you do not know or trust
  • Don’t click links in emails, instead type the web address you know to be correct into your browser to go directly to the website
  • Never engage with traders that knock on your door. If you require repairs to your home contact reputable organisations or obtain recommendations from those who have used local tradespeople
  • Keep conversations with new friends within forums e.g. dating app or website chat. Never send money to someone you have never met
You can learn more about coronavirus scams and what to look out for here:

Protect Yourself Online

Install anti-virus software 
Viruses can be used to steal your personal information and your money.

Don’t share private information 
Check your privacy settings on all of your social networking profiles.

Protect your phone 
Set a PIN code and remember not to store passwords on your phone.

Don’t share your password
Never tell anyone your full password. We’ll never ask for it.

Keep your password strong
Use a mix of upper and lower case letters, including numbers and symbols

Watch out for fraudsters
Carefully check every email, text message or phone call is authentic and don’t respond to emails that don’t address you personally, or that you’re not expecting to receive.

Take caution
Be wary of emails that suggest there’s a problem with your account or security. We’d never send you an email asking for you to disclose personal information.

Hover, don’t click
If the email contains a link, hover your mouse over the link to see its true destination – never click on links you don’t trust completely.

Be sure of attachments
Don’t open any attachments unless you know the sender and are expecting to receive an attachment.


Spotting The Fakes

Fraudsters use fake emails and websites to obtain your personal information. This practice is known as phishing.

Phishing means that fraudsters may send you an email that looks as if it has come from us. It may even include a link to a website that looks like us. When you log in, they can obtain, and then use, your password. They might even ask you to call them or respond by email.

As genuine and convincing as they appear to be, there are ways to spot a phishing email.

Identifying a phishing email

They aren’t unique
Phishing emails may have have a generic greeting and won’t address you by name.

Attention to detail 
They often contain poor grammar and punctuation, and are badly designed.

Time sensitive messages
They usually convey a sense of urgency, i.e. ‘Your account will be locked today unless you act now!’

Look out for links
Some will include a link that will take you to an unsafe site, or one that could compromise the security of your device by downloading software or malware onto it.


How We Keep You Safe

Our systems employ modern technologies and security which are independently and regularly tested

It goes without saying that security is a top priority here at Masthaven. We’re proactive and vigilant where cybersecurity issues are concerned. And you can be sure that protecting customer data is always at the forefront of our mind.

To keep you safe, robust security and protection systems sit at the heart of our IT infrastructure.

We’re also fully behind industry initiatives such as Take Five – the national campaign to help prevent financial fraud, run by Financial Fraud Action UK.

  • We will never phone or email you and ask for all your personal information
  • We will never email asking for account information

If You Think You Are A Victim Of Online Fraud

If you think your banking details are at risk, or money has left your account, we’re here to help you. Call us immediately on 0330 363 6666 (our lines are always open)

You may also want to report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040. They’ll make a note of the incident and will provide you with a Crime Reference number if you need one.

And you can always call both.

We'll never phone and ask for all your personal information. If you do receive a call from someone claiming to be from Masthaven Bank and you're not sure it's us, hang up and call us back.

If you have not opted out of receiving marketing emails, we may occasionally send you offers about other Masthaven Bank products.


Get In The Know

To find out more about how you can keep yourself safe online, take a look at the following websites: