Keeping your family safe

Keeping you and your family safe from scams is important. You can protect yourself and your loved ones from most fraud by knowing the warning signs, and what you can do if you see them.

You may have a loved one who has trouble looking after their money or getting out and about. Sadly, this means they may be at risk of someone close to them stealing their money.

What you can do:

  • Try to make sure your loved one has people they can trust with day-to-day matters - Having more than one person looking after your loved one’s finances stops one person having complete control.
  • Ask to speak to your loved one in person if you’re concerned - If you think a carer might steal money, talk to your loved one about keeping their money and bank account access secure. If you’re worried that bills aren’t being paid, ask to see receipts.
  • Tell your loved one not to share their bank card or Internet Banking details - The only person who should be able to use a bank card and PIN, and log into an Internet Banking account, is the person who is named on the account. Joint account holders should always each have their own username and password.
  • Tell your loved one not to write down their PIN or Internet Banking details - While it can be difficult to remember a PIN or Internet Banking details, it’s important your loved one doesn’t write these down as someone could then use them to access their money.
  • Remind your loved one not to keep large amounts of cash in the house - Large amounts of cash should be kept safe in the bank.
  • Make sure your loved one’s chequebook hasn’t been tampered with - Your loved one should count the cheques to be sure – remember that cheques can be cut out so it’s not always obvious.

When you're in a relationship, you'll often share some day-to-day costs. But if you let your partner use your account and the relationship ends, they might still be able to take your money.

What you can do:

  • Don’t share your bank card or Internet Banking details - The only person who should be able to use a bank card and PIN, and log into an Internet Banking account, is the person who’s named on the account.
  • Get a joint account if you’re sharing expenses - If you live with a partner and share costs and expenses, think about setting up a joint account. You can close this down if the relationship ends. Joint account holders should always each have their own Internet Banking username and password.
  • Don’t use an easily guessed PIN code or Internet Banking password - For example memorable dates or children’s names can be obvious to your partner or ex. Also, if your relationship breaks down it’s important you change your banking details if your ex-partner might know them.
  • Don’t write down your PIN or Internet Banking details - While it can be difficult to remember a PIN or Internet Banking details, it’s important you don’t write these down as someone could then use them to access your money.
  • Don’t keep large amounts of cash in the house - Large amounts of cash should be kept safe in the bank.
  • Make sure your chequebook hasn’t been tampered with - You should count the cheques to be sure – remember that cheques can be cut out so it’s not always obvious.

Dating websites, chatrooms and apps can be a great way to meet new people. But scammers sometimes set up fake profiles to carry out fraud.

What you can do:

  • Be careful when sending money to someone you’ve just met – Be wary if they’re asking you to send them a lot of money. A fraudster may tell you a convincing lie so that you’ll send money. For example they could tell you their family member needs money for medical treatment, or they need money for a flight to visit you.
  • Take the website’s advice - Dating websites, chatrooms and apps should offer advice to help you spot fake profiles and scams.
  • Never share your bank details - Don’t give your bank details to anyone you’ve just met on a website, especially if you’ve never met them in person.
  • Be careful if someone wants to put money in your account and then asks you to send it to someone else - If this money came from illegal activity then this is likely to be a crime, even if you didn’t know you were doing something wrong. This might be ‘money muling’, even if you’re told it’s for another reason. Don’t agree to move money between accounts.

Criminals may try to convince your loved ones to use their bank account to move money for the criminal. If this money came from illegal activity then this is likely to be a crime, even if your loved one didn’t know they were doing something wrong.  This is called ‘money muling’

What to look out for:

  • Your loved one starts a job with an unknown or suspicious business - Fraudsters advertise fake jobs that can often be carried out from home moving money between accounts. In fact, your loved one may be moving money for of criminals without even knowing.
  • Your loved one unexpectedly has lots of cash and/or designer goods - Fraudsters look for people who are trying to earn money quickly. For example students or those with money problems.

What you can do:

  • Teach your loved one about ‘money muling’ - Teenagers and students may be more likely to be tempted by this kind of offer, especially if they are looking to earn money. Money muling is a serious criminal offence. Help your loved one to understand what money muling is and how it could affect them.
  • Tell your loved one to make sure they’re not ‘money muling’ - Your loved one shouldn’t agree to a job where they are sent payments and are 'paid' by keeping some of it whilst forwarding the rest to different accounts.

Report it to us:

  • If someone knows your Internet Banking passwords or has used your Internet Banking account without your permission
  • If money has fraudulently left your Bank of Scotland Internet Banking account
  • If you or someone you know has used a Bank of Scotland account to move someone else’s money

0345 600 7727 (Lines are open 24 hours a day) +44 1132 888 408 from outside the UK

If you have a hearing or speech impairment, you can contact us 24/7 using the Next Generation Text (BGT) Service. If you’re Deaf and a BSL user, you can use the SignVideo service.

For any other issues that you think may be related to fraud please call Action Fraud:

0300 123 2040
Lines are open Monday to Friday 9am-6pm. Text phone users can ring 0300 123 2050.

They’ll be able to log the incident and provide you with a Crime Reference number if needed. Action Fraud collects data from across the UK to help banks and other businesses combat fraud.

  • Ask us for help

We understand it can be difficult for some people to get out and about. Come into branch or visit our support site to understand what we can do to support your loved one with their banking.