Scams: a guide for our registrants

Some of our Registrants have recently been targeted by scammers ‘phishing’ online concerning their services. Phishing is the fraudulent practice of sending emails purporting to be from reputable companies or individuals in order to access personal information such as passwords and bank details. Whilst these are occasional, technology has enabled ‘phishing’ scammers to target businesses, including therapists, due to their online presence, be that through directories, website or social media.

We suggest reading our guidance about scams; how to detect and report them, even if you are yet to be affected by these. We understand that in the course of psychoanalytic work, things may often seem ‘out of the ordinary’, but here we are particularly referring to communications outside of the room or session, that often pertain to the financial arrangements of the session.

How to spot a scam

If you are contacted by a possible patient or referral, or a current patient, and something doesn’t feel quite right, things begin to feel off with the financial arrangements or requests, it’s possible you’re being targeted by a scammer.  

  • You’re being asked for your bank details including bank account and sort code very quickly before the usual process for referrals or initial assessments has been confirmed
  • When payment arrangements are requested that are out of the ordinary.
  • You are sent lumps of money ‘in advance’ that aren’t the agreed amount.
  • You are asked to send them any ‘excess’ money they transferred to you. This is commonly known as over payment fraud.
  • You are asked to provide any sensitive information that is out of the ordinary that could give away your bank details.
  • You are being asked to agree to anything or provide details over the phone quickly and without the chance to think about it.

For more information on how to spot a phishing scam online, click here.

If you have been targeted by a scam, it’s important to report this so it doesn’t happen again in the future. To do this, visit the Action Fraud website.

You can also visit the National Cyber Security Centre website to report scam message that you received via email, text, website or phone. This is a UK government organisation that has the power to investigate and remove scam email addresses and websites.​


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