National Insurance number ‘compromised’ – Britons inundated with worrying scam attempts

PMQs: Johnson says UK ‘must be vigilant’ for pension scams

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The scam attempt sees the fraudsters contact members of the public via telephone, and those who answer are met with an automated voice. The scammer falsely claims their National Insurance number “has been compromised” and to fix the matter and get a new number, the victim would need to “press one on their handset to be connected to the caller”.

This is all under the pretence the victim will receive a new National Insurance number.

A very sinister reality exists, however. They have actually been connected to a criminal who can use the personal details they receive to commit fraud.

It’s something Action Fraud warned about back in January, after the national reporting centre for fraud and cyber crime received more than 1,000 extra calls from members of the public within a week.

Pauline Smith, Head of Action Fraud, said at the time: “We are asking the public to remain vigilant and be cautious of any automated calls they receive mentioning their National Insurance number becoming compromised.

“It’s important to remember if you’re contacted out the blue by someone asking for your personal or financial details, this could be a scam.

“Even confirming personal details, such as your email address, date of birth or mother’s maiden name, can be used by criminals to commit fraud.

“If you have any doubts about what is being asked of you, hang up the phone.

“No legitimate organisation will rush or pressure you.”

Forms of this scam tactic continue to be received, with many Britons having reported their experience of similar calls on social media.

Writing on Twitter this week, one person wrote: “I just had a scam phone call telling me by National Insurance number had been “compromised”.

“Hung up, googled it and its a known scam to get additional details such as maiden name, passwords etc. IF IN DOUBT, HANG UP! @actionfrauduk.”

Another person penned: “I received a scam call from this number purporting to be the national crime agency.

“Apparently my national insurance number has popped up in their investigation.

“I have blocked the no. But wanted to share my experience,”(sic) they added, tagging the verified Twitter account for Hertfordshire Police.

Earlier this week, one person asked: “Anyone else getting recorded calls purporting to be from @bankofengland, saying your National Insurance number is going to be terminated?”

A response from the verified Twitter account for the Bank of England told the Twitter user they are “aware of a scam call circulating the general public in which individuals are receiving phone calls reportedly from the Bank of England, requesting their personal details and National Insurance number”.

“This is a scam and we would advise you to terminate the call,” the central bank added.

Action Fraud suggests a number of steps to take in order to protect oneself from falling victim to a scam.

The alert said: “If you receive an unexpected phone call, text message or email that asks for your personal or financial details, remember to:


“Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.


“Could it be fake? It’s ok to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.


“If you have provided personal details to someone over the phone and you now believe this to be a scam, contact your bank, building society and credit card company immediately and report it to Action Fraud at or by calling 0300 123 2040.

“You can also contact CIFAS to apply for protective registration.

“This means extra checks will be carried out when a financial service, such as a loan, is applied for using your address and personal details, to verify its you and not a fraudster.”

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