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Posts Tagged ‘scams’

Beware of the Companies House scam

Monday, June 9th, 2014

I recently filed my Annual Return with Companies House. In case you were not aware or are new to owning a limited company, Annual Returns need to be filed once a year and effectively are a snapshot of the company’s ownership. As a director it is your legal duty to file this document and if you don’t you may be looking at a nasty fine and even a criminal record! Filing is done easily on-line and you simply pay a fee of £13 to do so. See Companies House guide here for more details. Phishing-Scam

That aside, having filed mine, I received what I thought was an acknowledgment from Companies House and inviting me to open an attachment with a copy of the Annual Return in it. I am getting wise in my old age and sadly now double check EVERYTHING. Luckily I did as it was a scam and had I opened the attachment it would have triggered an awful virus into my system with heaven knows what consequences.

Differences are often hard to spot as in this case it seemed to be just hyphens eg ” web-filing@companies-house.gov.uk” compared to: “webfiling@companieshouse.gov.uk”. I understand from Companies House that they never attach zip files so that is also a good indicator

Bottom line: be ever so careful with every email and if in doubt, absolutely do NOT open any attachments.

PS Don’t rely on the email addresses I have quoted above as the scammers may have changed it yet again. Companies House have a list of the current scams with pictures of what fake emails look like. See here for more details. What a world we live in…..

Beware of the trademark scam

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

I recently applied to register a trademark with the Intellectual Property Office. Within a few weeks I received an offical letter from the ‘International Patent and Trademark Service’. It depicted my trademark, the classes I had applied for and was asking for 970 Euros. To all intents and purposes it looked like an invoice as part of the registration process. However, I knew I had already paid my fees and so on looking at the very small print in the letter, it emerged that it had absolutely nothing to do with my trademark registration and was a scam!

IPTSThe letter was actually an invitation from a company in Bratislava to part with 970 Euros in return for a listing on their database with no government connection whatsoever.

So once again the lesson is: always read the small print and if it doesn’t feel right, you are probably right.
Be a savvy entrepreneur!

Beware of the domain name renewal scam!

Monday, February 7th, 2011

DO NOT GO ANYWHERE NEAR the Domain Renewal Group, if you do happen to receive a letter from them!!!!! They are a bunch of scam-artists – a client is still struggling to get back her money from them.

Generally, genuine Domain Registrar companies will only remind you 60 days in advance about your domain names – but what these b***ers do is pre-empt that by contacting you FOUR months in advance. The info is available off the “WHOIS” site which shows all domain info worldwide – I can tell that as previously they addressed me as “TLR Internet Marketing” but that business no longer exists.

So… what can you do?

  1. Always know who you purchased your domain name(s) from – they are the ONLY ones you actually need to pay for renewals each year or two (depending on the length of time you made your original purchase for).
  2. Find out from your domain registrar if you can purchase a privacy option for your domain(s) – this prevents your info from being on the WHOIS (http://whois.domaintools.com/) and other sites

If you aren’t sure about letters related to your websites, ask your webmaster/mistress. As a rule of thumb though, if you purchased yoru domain or hosting online, communications will be online