How to Spot an Immigration Scam

Breytenbachs hear many heart-breaking stories of persons who are victims of immigration scams.

Scammers are ruthless in their acts and methods. People are often desperate to believe the lies sold to them. Many people pay over money without thinking twice. They resign from their current jobs, believing that the supposed overseas job is real.

Breytenbachs have subsequently compiled some tips on how to spot an immigration scam, and will report any of the latest scams as we become aware of them.

Latest Immigration Scams

Calls from the supposed “Home Office”

In the latest immigration scam that Breytenbachs became aware of, migrants in the UK are being phoned after hours by the supposed “Home Office” on their mobile phones. The number shows up as an ordinary mobile number. When answered, it is a recorded voice telling the person that there is a problem with their immigration status and that they need to follow the prompts. Some people are told that they paid short on their Immigration Health Surcharge fees, or that their BRP is not valid.

The Home Office has confirmed to Breytenbachs that they are aware of this scam. They have also confirmed that the Home Office do not work over weekends. Furthermore, they will always call from an anonymous number, and the call will always be preceded by a letter or email.

Breytenbachs strongly advise that if you do not have any pending visas or are already a British citizen, to simply ignore these calls. If you do have a pending visa at the Home Office, we advise that you put the phone down. You can then contact the Home Office directly via an official number or email address, using your reference number, to check on any possible issues. Alternatively, if you are a client of Breytenbachs, ask your consultant to check on any possible issues.

Job Offers from Scammers 

In another scam, job offers are made to persons outside the UK, asking them to send money in order to provide for the necessary immigration arrangements. These scammers are so cunning that they even make use of our company’s name in their supposed ‘job offers.’ Breytenbachs Immigration Consultants (BIC) are supposed to be the company taking care of the immigration side of the job offer to the overseas person. The email addresses used for Breytenbachs Immigration Consultants are, however, not those of BIC but or other free addresses.

But how do you spot an immigration scam? The following tips might assist.

How to spot an immigration scam

  • Be wary if offered a job and no formal job interview took place. When something sounds too good to be true, it unfortunately often is!
  • Be wary if anyone asks you to pay over any monies for Home Office fees.
  • Do not provide anyone with your bank account or card details! Especially not to the supposed UK employer who wants to pay over the money for your (supposed) plane ticket!
  • Make sure the company offering the job is legit, by doing a background check on them. Check among your UK friends or family. Do an internet search, or telephone the head office of the company.
  • A legitimate UK employer or immigration agent will not make use of email addresses.
  • Be wary of persons calling you and telling you that they are from the Home Office. You will be told that you are being fined a certain amount and asked to pay the ‘fine.’ They will also provide you with a false name and return phone number of the ‘contact person at the UK Home Office’. These calls appear to be genuine and very convincing, and the scammers will ask you to pay the fine as soon as possible to avoid deportation, etc. If you are concerned that there are issues, rather call the Home Office on their official number to check for any possible issues. If you are a client of Breytenbachs, get in touch with your consultant to check on your behalf.
  • Trust your ‘gut feeling.’ If something feels ‘too good to be true’ or if you are uneasy for any reason, rather take the time to check out the situation than fall into the trap of these ruthless scammers.

How Breytenbachs can help you 

Scammers are unscrupulous and criminals. The methods they use might appear to be very genuine and convincing. If you are concerned that you might be a victim, contact us today!


Please note that the information in this article does not constitute professional advice. It is provided for general information purposes without any warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied.

Please contact us today for further information or applications.

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