'Phishing' explained

Unsolicited email is the starting point for many email scams, the purpose of which is often to defraud you. The convenience and anonymity of email enables scammers to work in volume. Even if they fool a tiny percentage of the many thousands of people they email, their scam can pay dividends.

Phishing emails are used by fraudsters to try to encourage people to willingly surrender their personal information (such as their usernames, passwords or credit card details) usually by fooling them into visiting a bogus website where they either download malware or reveal sensitive personal or financial data. The emails appear to be from a legitimate organisation, often banks, social networking sites or online auction sites which then direct the recipient to a fake website which is carefully crafted to appear almost identical to the one it’s imitating.

Remember! Gocompare.com and other legitimate organisations will never email you to ask you for your:

  • Banking details
  • Credit or debit card numbers
  • Driving licence number
  • Email addresses or usernames
  • Passwords
  • Your full name and date of birth
  • Your postal address

Top tip: If you hover your cursor (mouse) over a link in an email or on a web page the website address of the link will be displayed in the status bar or in an information balloon; make sure this is the website you’re expecting before clicking on it.

How to report 'phishing'

If you have received what you think is a phishing email that claims to be from gocompare.com, you should attach it to an email and send it to us at phishing@gocompare.com, then delete the email from your inbox.

You can report fraud to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud reporting centre. Use their online fraud reporting tool or call 0300 123 2040 to speak to one of their specialist fraud advisers. 

Related: What to do if you think your security has been compromised

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