There is no doubt that financial fraud is a growing concern within the UK. Financial fraud can take a variety of forms including phishing, identity theft and advance fee fraud.
In this section, you can find out how to keep yourself safe when dealing direct with us through our postal, telephone or online service and what to do if you have any suspicions.
Consider the following tips to help keep you safe both on and off the internet.
Always be cautious when receiving an unexpected call requesting personal information. The other party instigated the call and should already know who you are. Often you can be caught unaware and it usually happens at the wrong time when you are busy with other matters.
If asked for complete security details do not reply, try not to get flustered or intimidated and do not follow the instructions even if it is suggested that your account may be frozen or you may incur a fine if you don't. If in doubt, take the caller's name and call us back on our cutomer services number.
Remember that staff at Alliance Trust Savings will never ask you for your Personal ID or Password.
You can request a copy of your online transaction statement at any time through Alliance Trust Savings Online Dealing www.alliancetrustsavings.co.uk/i.nvest You should check the details recorded on your statements and if you find a transaction on your statement that you did not make, or you are unsure of, then contact us immediately on 01382 573737 or by Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
It is essential that you safeguard your personal information because you could always be the next victim of a fraudster. Always shred any papers with your personal information on them before throwing them away.
Look after your personal information. Keep confidential information in secure places.
Please keep us advised as soon as possible if you change your personal details such as your address, name or other contact details. With confidential mail going to a previous or old address, changing address can be a potential area for identify fraud. You can help keep safe by;
There are incidences where a person may be asked by an unknown third party to use your account for the receipt of funds on behalf of third parties, normally with the offer of a commission payment. These funds are often the proceeds of fraud and such requests should be refused whatever the circumstances.
Additional information is also available on the Get Safe Online website www.getsafeonline.org/, the Metropolitan Police website www.met.police.uk/fraudalert or the home office website www.identifytheft.org.uk
Should you require any further information please contact Customer Services on 01382 573737.
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When trading or managing your plans and accounts online, there are a number of simple and easy ways to help keep you safe by protecting your computer, keeping your identity secure and staying safe when online.
To protect your computer you should use anti-virus software, maintain a firewall, and ensure that your computer software (your operating system) is up-to-date:
Install and maintain antivirus software - Anti-virus software protects your computer in two ways. First, it detects and removes any computer viruses that have been installed on your computer without your permission. Second, it can help to prevent viruses from infecting your computer and compromising your online security.
If you do have antivirus software, we advise that you should update your virus definitions automatically when available to keep the latest threats at bay. We recommend you choose a product that includes anti-spyware software.
Maintain a firewall - The firewall is a security application that sits between your computer and the internet shielding your PC from unauthorised access. Any PC that you use to access the internet should use a firewall. We recommend that your Firewall is set to monitor both incoming and outgoing internet traffic - this ensures that you have control over information that enters and leaves your PC.
Windows XP and Mac OS X have firewalls built into them. Consult your help menus for instructions on checking or setting up your firewall. In addition, you can download free firewall applications, or obtain a firewall in a commercially available product.
Ensure that your computer software is up-to-date - You should regularly check for updates to your operating system and your most commonly used applications. If you have a Windows computer, you should visit the Windows Update site regularly. If you have an Apple computer running OS X, you should run the Software Update tool regularly. For patches/updates for any of your software applications, visit the software publisher's website.
Look after your security details - remember that our staff will never ask you to tell us your Personal ID and Password in order to access your plans. Your Personal ID and Password are the key to accessing your accounts and information online. You should keep these in a safe place, never share them with any one else, and change your password regularly to ensure its security.
Phishing is a fraud technique commonly used to attempt to trick people into revealing their security number and password to fraudsters.
A phishing scam typically works by the fraudster sending out a fake e-mail that has been designed to look like it comes from a reputable source. This fake e-mail asks for security details or directs customers to a counterfeit banking or commerce site. At the counterfeit site, the fraudster asks the customer to enter their complete security details - password, security questions, user name... the sky is the limit. These stolen security details are then used to commit fraud.
If you receive an e-mail requesting your security details do not reply and do not follow the instructions even if the e-mail suggests that you need to take immediate action to stop your account being frozen or it indicates that you may incur a fine if you don't. These are just tricks that the fraudster is using to manipulate you in to giving away your vital details.
If you suspect phishing, call us at 01382 573737 or forward the suspect e-mail to email@example.com
The more you know about fraud, the less likely you are to become a fraud victim. Credit card fraud, telephone scams, and internet fraud all use unique mechanisms in attempting to steal your information. The three most commonly used internet scams are phishing, trojans, and spyware. More details on these and recent security threats are covered in the section Latest security alerts.
Ensure that the site you think you are managing your finances online with is a genuine site.
Always type the internet banking URL directly into your browser - Type www.alliancetrustsavings.co.uk/i.nvest directly into your browser instead of following links. You greatly reduce your chances of being duped by a spoof site.
Check for 'https' and the lock - Genuine secure sites have addresses that start with 'https' and display a padlock icon.
Double click that lock - Double clicking the lock icon that appears in the bottom section of your internet browser brings up information about the lock that can help you confirm that the site is genuine. If the lock is not within its valid dates or has been issued to a website that you do not recognise, DO NOT ENTER YOUR SECURITY DETAILS and call us at 01382 573737
Always logout of secure sites - Never leave your computer unattended when logged in to a secure session (like Alliance Trust i.nvest). Ensure that you log-out properly when you have finished your online session.
Be extra careful when using computers in public places - As you cannot be certain about the security of public wireless networks or computers in public places (like a library or internet cafe) you should be cautious about using internet banking services in these situations. Never change your security details while using a public wireless network or a public computer.
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We have provided a list of security alerts and current varieties of fraud which can impact financial service customers as well as contact details to access further information regarding fraud.
April 2016: It has been recently brought to our attention that members of the public have been approached by scam businesses offering to buy shares in Alliance Trust . We recommend that if you receive an unsolicited call from an investment firm that you do not know you should ask for confirmation that it is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). For further details of how you can make sure you are dealing with an authorised firm please refer to the FCA website.
We are aware that some people have received communications claiming to be from lottery organisations and which ask the recipient for personal information and bank details. Although some of these communications may include our name and logo they are not authorised by us and we strongly advise that you do not respond to them in any way.
It has also come to our attention that a small number of our customers have been receiving telephone calls purporting to be on behalf of Alliance Trust Savings. In the course of such calls individuals are being asked to divulge personal information such as their date of birth. We would warn all of our customers that such calls are not being made on behalf of Alliance Trust Savings and we would not ask for such information to be provided. We recommend that if you are unsure you ask for the person’s name and then call us back on 01382 573737 and ask for that person by name.
You should visit the FCA’s Scam Smart website to learn about investment scams.
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Someone impersonates you without your knowledge, often by stealing discarded or lost documents. Please visit www.identity-theft.org.uk for further details.
For free, useful advice on how to avoid becoming a victim of fraud, go to www.getsafeonline.org
The people responsible for these emails send the same message to many email addresses. They do not know your personal security details but the aim of the email is to get them, usually by providing links to websites that are cleverly disguised to appear to be legitimate company websites. Often, they request that you "update" or "verify" personal details. The emails may at times contain a link in the body, or an attachment. The link will be designed to get you to go to a website designed to look similar to ours, but with a different url in order to harvest your login credentials. If there is an attachment, there is a good chance it contains malware that will install a key tracker.
You may get emails that look as if they're from Alliance Trust Savings with our logo and appearing to be addressed from us. To ensure that you only access our official website, we recommend that you always type www.alliancetrustsavings.co.uk in the address bar of your browser and click on the Login button from there.
Alliance Trust will never ask you to disclose any security details via email or send money to anyone except ourselves.
If you receive an email asking you to pay money into a bank account you do not recognise or asking you to update your details via a link, do not make the payment and do not click on any of the links in an email that looks suspicious.
A Trojan horse program is a computer virus that can be attached to emails, downloaded from websites or hidden inside other downloadable files such as MP3 files. Typically, fraudsters will send out emails at random to try to get you to click on a link from the email and visit a fake website where the Trojan is installed. The intention of the fraudster is to use the Trojan to find out your security details. They can do this by capturing keystrokes or taking screen shots. If a Trojan is downloaded onto your computer, it could capture your password and other log in details and send them to the fraudster, wherever they might be in the world.
Anti-virus software may help you in identifying Trojans.
The advanced fee or 419 scam attempts to obtain money or bank details from individuals usually by using a story about blocked funds, often millions of dollars that can be released for a small advanced fee or by entering bank details to which the money can be sent. The emails can appear to come from government departments, large companies or lotteries. Remember that, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
These are attempts to lure unsuspecting people into helping to launder money by using your account to transfer money overseas, for a commission. You should not respond to these emails or provide any personal details.
A scam is a scheme designed to con you out of your cash. Scams come in many forms and are getting more sophisticated all the time. So, even if you think you would never be fooled, make sure you remain sceptical about offers that seem too good to be true - remember they usually are.
Scammers aim to con us all. Deceptive premium rate competition scams, bogus sweepstakes and lotteries, get-rich-quick schemes and fake health cures are some of the favoured means of separating the unwary from their money. And the number of scams just keeps on growing.
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is campaigning to stamp out scams. Every day, people throughout the UK are falling victim to scams of one kind or another. It could be an unexpected prize draw or lottery win, or a chance to invest in an exciting new money-making or investment programme. But remember - if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
For tips on how to stay safe online see the UK banking industry's Bank Safe Online website - see http://www.financialfraudaction.org.uk/Consumer-fraud-prevention-advice-remote-banking.asp
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We are here to help you if you think someone may have attempted to obtain monies or information from your plans or accounts. If you suspect that you've been the victim of fraud or notice any suspicious transactions on your Alliance Trust Savings account, you can report this to us by telephoning us on 08000 326 323 or 01382 573737 or by Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Our office details are:
Alliance Trust Savings Limited,
PO Box 164
8 West Marketgait
Alliance Trust Savings Limited is a subsidiary of Alliance Trust PLC and is registered in Scotland No. SC 98767, registered office, PO Box 164, 8 West Marketgait, Dundee DD1 9YP; is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority, firm reference number 116115. Alliance Trust Savings gives no financial or investment advice.