Are YOU due a refund on your energy bills? Why Gmail and Hotmail users should be on alert

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Gmail and Hotmail users have been put on alert about a callous new scam that takes advantage of concerns surrounding the cost of living crisis. Rising energy bill prices are one of the most pressing concerns for Brits at the moment, with news emerging this week that Ofgem has raised the energy bill price cap once again which could see bills hit over £3,500 for the year. It’s an understandably terrifying time for many people in the UK, but cold-hearted scammers are taking advantage of people’s concerns by spreading a fake email that Gmail and Hotmail users need to lookout for.

These dangerous messages, which claim to be from E.ON, were highlighted by Action Fraud UK who have received over 200 reports about the scam from Brits targeted by scammers.

The fraud reporting centre said these bogus messages claim the recipient is due a refund from E.ON after being overcharged.

The target of the scam is then told to head to an alleged E.ON website to claim their refund.

The website – which looks convincing – asks people to confirm their details so they can receive their alleged E.ON refund.

However, it is all part of an elaborate con to steal personal and financial information from unsuspecting victims.

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Warning people about the scam Action Fraud said: “Watch out for E.ON refund scam emails.

“Action Fraud has received 206 reports relating to fake emails purporting to be from E.ON, the utility company.

“The emails state that the recipient is owned a refund due to an ‘overcharge’. The links in the emails lead to genuine-looking websites that are designed to steal E.ON login credentials, as well as personal and financial information.”

E.ON on its website also has advice which helps customers avoid any kind of nasty email scam.

The utility firm said: “Are you worried that an email looks suspicious? You’d be right to be cautious. Everyday, millions of us receive emails that look familiar, but are in fact ‘phishing’ attempts.

“At E.ON Energy, we’ll never ask you for personal information, like passwords, payment details or your address. So be safe with your details.”

E.ON goes on to offer advice on how to stay clear of scams. This includes checking the sender’s email address as well as hovering over any hyperlinks in a message to see if it looks official.

The energy firm adds that official correspondence should be addressed directly to you, not begin with a generic greeting, and that typos or other grammatical errors shouldn’t appear in legitimate messages.

If you double check all of these things and still aren’t sure the best thing you can do is contact the organisation you’ve received the suspicious message from directly.

While this will take you extra time it will save you a lot more in the time lost, and stress caused, if you did unfortunately fall victim to such a scam.

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