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Accommodation addresses

What it is

When fraudsters use an address to give you the confidence that you’re dealing with a legitimate business, either by hiring a location or using a mail-forward service based at the address.

Protect yourself

  • A prestigious address isn't a guarantee that a business is authentic.
  • Don’t send personal information and/or money up front if you’ve been offered a prize or reward.
  • Don’t respond to any letters, emails, text messages or social media that looks suspicious, including messages with poor spelling and grammar.

Spot the signs

The address is listed for hire or to let on the Internet, or advertised as somewhere people can hire for temporary use, such as serviced offices or apartments.
The organisation isn't listed with Companies House.

How it happens

Someone may contact you using an accommodation address to ask you to send payment or fee to the address. It could be any of a range of frauds such as an advance fees or bogus lotteries, or an offer to buy low-quality or non-existent products.

Accommodation addresses are usually offices that collect mail on behalf of others. They’re different from PO boxes; they’re street addresses to give the appearance of a genuine office.

Some fraudsters claim to help you set up your own business. They’ll offer you use of the impressive-sounding address as a base for your company’s registration and may even offer to handle your post. They’ll fail to honour the agreement or use it to tamper with your company’s finances, or intercept your mail.
How it happens

Friends, family members, carers or company employees may be asked to look after your personal or business finances. They may instead take advantage of their access to bank accounts or information for their own benefit, or misuse the assets of a business to embezzle funds for themselves.

If you have been given a position of trust, it is your responsibility to keep a close eye on the individual’s finances, particularly if they are vulnerable. Handle bills and statements with care and shred them before throwing them out.

How to report it

If Fraud has been committed report it to Action Fraud. For more advice and to raise any concerns, contact the Office of the Public Guardian.

Source - Action Fraud

Date Published: Jul 23, 2018

Types of fraud

A-Z of fraud

To help understand which fraud you've been affected by, we've categorised them into an alphabetical list.

What is fraud and cyber crime?

Fraud is when trickery is used to gain a dishonest advantage, which is often financial, over another person.

Advance fee fraud

Advance fee fraud is when fraudsters target victims to make advance or upfront payments for goods, services and/or financial gains that do not materialise.

Corporate fraud

Corporate fraud can be any fraud committed against a business.

Individual fraud

Individual fraud could be any fraud that targets a person directly. Individual frauds can differ from frauds affecting businesses and other organisations.

Online fraud

Some fraudsters rely on the internet to commit their crimes. Learn about some different types of internet frauds that and how to protect yourself and get safe online.

Identity fraud and identity theft

Identity theft is when your personal details are stolen and identity fraud is when those details are used to commit fraud.
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