Skip to main content

Bogus HMRC ‘Unsuccessful Submission’ Emails Point to Malware Websites

written by Brett M. Christensen June 26, 2018 Red Malware key on Computer Keyboard

This email, which purports to be from the UK’s HM Revenue and Customs ( HMRC ), claims that your submission was received but failed data checks and could not be accepted.

The email urges you to click a link to view your submission and send a corrected version.

However, the email is not from HMRC and the claim that a document submission was unsuccessful is just a ruse designed to trick you into clicking the link.

In fact, clicking the link can take you to websites that harbour malware. The exact nature of this malware may vary although it is likely designed to steal sensitive information from infected computers. The malware selectively targets systems based on characteristics defined by the criminals, so not every user who clicks the link may receive the malicious payload.

If you receive this email, do not click any links or open any attachments that it contains.

Note also that online criminals regularly use fake HMRC emails to distribute phishing scams as well as malware 


An example of the malware email:

Unsuccessful submission for Reference 475-VB22516

The submission for reference 475-VB22516 was successfully received but unfortunately failed HM Revenue & Customs data checks and could not be accepted.

Please use the link below to view your submission, correct it and send again.

View submission for reference 475-VB22516

If you continue having problems, please contact the Online Services Helpdesk.

Telephone 0300 200 3600, Textphone 0300 200 3603 or email
We are open:

Monday to Friday – 08.00 to 20.00

Saturday – 08.00 to 16.00

(We are closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day).


Back to top
Powered by Open Objects