Cyber criminals are taking advantage of the recent disruption to NatWest's banking services by targeting its customers with a series of phishing emails.
UK government agency Action Fraud warned on Wednesday that fraudsters are sending customers fake emails designed to look like they are from NatWest, with some even claiming to be from the bank's chief executive.
The emails reportedly offer users access to their account in exchange for personal information.
"The latest opportunistic scam is cleverly designed to play on the anxiety of NatWest customers locked out of their accounts," read Action Fraud's warning.
"In one of the phishing emails, purporting to be from Stephen Hester, the head of RBS, apologies the problems at RBS and says a ‘security upgrade' requires them to update their information."
The email then contains a link that directs the customer to a fake NatWest page requesting their account login details.
RBS, the group that owns NatWest, has since confirmed to V3 that it is aware of the scam and taking measures to combat it.
"We've been issuing fraud warnings via Tweets over the last few days to make sure customers stay vigilant. Please note RBS never ask for online banking login details by email. You can report any suspicious emails to [email protected]," it said in a statement.
Problems with NatWest's service first arose last Thursday when RBS Group confirmed its systems had failed to properly update customers' balances and payments were no longer being processed.
The news comes just after the FBI concluded a massive anti-card theft operation, arresting 24 individuals believed to have mounted similar fraud campaigns.
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