back to article Email apparently from Home Office warns of emails apparently from Home Office

The Home Office has sent unsolicited emails to the public, warning that the Home Office will never send unsolicited emails to the public, and will not ask for personal information or passwords in an email. The lay-off happy government department warned the public to be wary of emails that appear to come from the Ministry of …

  1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    emails they deem suspicious

    Well if I thought they really came from the home office then I would be cautious - but as long as they are only hackers.

    1. RogerT

      Re: emails they deem suspicious

      I didn't even have to open my last letter from the revenue as it wasn't sealed which wouldn't be too bad except that my post goes through a private office.

      I cannot understand the revenue's hatred of email. I would much prefer to communicate with them via email. And yes I have received one of their two week notices more than two weeks after the documents' date.

      1. Jim Howes

        Re: emails they deem suspicious

        > I cannot understand the revenue's hatred of email.

        Or anything electronic for that matter. I recently convinced them to give me a refund in respect of job expenses, and my choices were

        A) A cheque posted to my address or

        B) Pay into bank sort code XX-XX-XX Account XXXXXXXXX

        So I chose B, it's the twenty first century, and I can send money to another account in an hour without having to wait for banks to clear cheques, a process which which takes an annoying week (five working days, and you can't expect banks to work on weekends, despite the fact that I have for over twenty years now)

        So, refund letter arrives, I check my bank. Nothing yet.

        The following day, I check my bank. CHEQUE PAID IN A BOOTLE PAYMENT OPS

        They paid in the cheque for me, but it still a *&(#$*ing cheque, and finally cleared today, a week after the letter they sent me.

        while( !unconcious ) bang(head, wall);

        1. Kubla Cant Silver badge


          There's a similar irony in the new car tax (VED) system. You pay for your car tax online, and you no longer have to display a tax disc. +10 for belated arrival in the 21st century. But if you sell your car you have to apply for a refund of the remaining tax, which is sent as a cheque in the post. -10 for lack of follow-through.

          I suspect that the offices of HMRC and DVLA are still like offices used to be half a century ago. For anything to do with paying out money you have to go to a cashier's office where a grumpy old geezer behind a barred window grudgingly writes out cheques using a dip pen.

          ("CHEQUE PAID IN A BOOTLE PAYMENT OPS" - I bet the cheque would clear quicker if it wasn't in a bottle.)

        2. King Jack

          Re: emails they deem suspicious

          @ Jim Howes

          It is no accident. The DWP do the exact same thing only they mail the cheque to you. Despite the fact that you chose the option to get the money paid direct to your bank. The longer they keep your money, the more interest they make on it. When you get the cheque you have to walk to a branch and pay it in. They should be fined.

      2. RogerT

        Re: emails they deem suspicious

        I've suffered both from the revenue as well.

        What gets me is the only way I can find to claim a refund is via a formal complaint.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: emails they deem suspicious

      As we are mostly all techies and OCD logical, actually an email from source x reminding we should not trust an email is from source x, is completely fine, since the validity of the message is not dependent on the veracity of the source. Sorry, running counter to the humor and it is a funny article. Can't help myself. Sorry.

      1. Pali Gap

        Re: emails they deem suspicious

        ..."completely fine, since the validity of the message is not dependent on the veracity of the source"

        But what of sending unsolicited email stating "we never send unsolicted email"?

        Epimenides the Cretan said: "All Cretans are liars"

  2. John G Imrie

    Theresa May ...

    Finally disappears in a puff of logic.

    Humm, that was easy. I wonder if I can prove that black is white.

    1. Kane Silver badge

      Re: Theresa May ...

      "I wonder if I can prove that black is white."

      Don't use that zebra crossing!

      Mine's the dressing gown with the unfortunately shaped teastain down the front.

  3. Your alien overlord - fear me

    Reg readers know to never open *any* emails (or lertters) from HMRC

    1. Andy Non Silver badge

      I always have a sense of dread when a letter arrives from the HMRC. Something about those brown envelopes stamped HMRC that fills me with fear and trepidation. Huge sense of relief if they just turn out to be a new tax code notification rather than a demand or fine for not submitting some document on time that I've never heard about.

      Emails or letters from hackers would be far less worrying.

      1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

        I had that rollercoaster feeling last week.

        Brown envelope turns up along with a sense of dread

        Contains letter saying I've overpaid by a fair bit, sense of delight

        Realising that's the money I'd been sending to offset my _next_ return, sense of dissapointment

  4. Arthur the cat Silver badge

    Not as funny as the original

    "Spaf's" net news article on faking net news articles from 1988. (Yes, I am that old since you ask.)

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I am nigerian prince working for hmrc, pleasings give me your bank details and I bestow moneys left by your (insert relative) on you.

    Many thankings,

    Prince narthanial the 7th

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Prince, this is Tony Blair

      Where's me dosh? If ya don't cough up soon yeez'll have UN sanctions.

  6. Howard Hanek

    Open Borders

    Open prison cells....its all the same isn't it? Just people seeking 'gainful employment' right? Don't worry about the culture. By the time the vultures have had their way 'culture' will be the least of our problems.

  7. Turtle


    "The Home Office has sent unsolicited emails to the public, warning [...] the public to be wary of emails that appear to come from the Ministry of Justice or the Home Office."

    This degree of candor from a government department is quite a rarity. This would seem to mark a new and commendable level of government transparency.

  8. hplasm


    Recursive spam!

    Spam spam spam spam, etc.

    1. Zog_but_not_the_first

      Re: Aiiee!

      Just in passing, "Aiiee!" is a word (?) I've only even come across in comics. Where does it originate?

      1. Henry Minute

        Re: Aiiee!


        1. hplasm

          Re: Aiiee!

          Beat me to it!

      2. billse10

        Re: Aiiee!

        people's horror when they see the questions on the All India Engineering Entrance Exam?

        1. Glenturret Single Malt

          Re: Aiiee!

          All India Industrial Engineering Entrance Exam, surely.

          Or, onomatopoiea.

  9. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Oh the irony...

    They sent an unsolicited email saying that they will never send an unsolicited email. How very Joseph Heller of them...

  10. NanoMeter

    We warn you...

    "don't open our emails. They're fake"

    "so why did you open this email?"

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't look Ethel

    Too late, she looked.

  12. Gavin Chester

    Interesting given HMRC is often held up as a poster boy for DMARC adoption in the UK.

    Wonder if its one government department not talking to another, perish the thought,,,

  13. Mike 16 Silver badge

    Reminds me of the dressing-down

    I got from the IT bods when I did not promptly act on an email consisting entirely of an attached Word(tm) document, at the height of panic about Word(tm) macro viruses. "But it's from the CEO". "Yes, it says it is, but the same batch of email contained a penis-pill spam 'from'". He did not get the connection.

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