Warning: Emails misusing the name of GHW Solicitors LLP
6 March 2018
Emails have been sent which falsely claim to be from GHW Solicitors LLP in relation to a memorandum of sale.
What is the scam?
The SRA has been informed that emails have been sent which falsely claim to be sent from “Gareth Williams, Managing Partner” at GHW Solicitors LLP.
The SRA has seen a copy of the email, which refers to an attached memorandum of sale letter for a particular property transaction and tells the reader that “particulars can be found at Adobe online secure portal”. A concern is that the attachment may contain malware.
The email appears to have been sent from “GHW Solicitors LLP” but was actually sent from the email address “firstname.lastname@example.org”
The email misuses a telephone number and address for a genuine firm of solicitors (see below).Any business or transactions carried out through the email address “email@example.com” are not undertaken by a genuine solicitor’s practice or an individual authorised or regulated by the SRA.
Is there a genuine firm or person?
The SRA does authorise and regulate a genuine firm of solicitors called GHW Solicitors LLP, whose managing partner is a genuine solicitor called Gareth Williams.
The genuine firm’s address is 19 Bolton Street, Ramsbottom, Bury, BL0 9HU and their genuine telephone number is 01706 827042.
The firm’s website is www.ghwsolicitors.co.uk and genuine emails from the firm are sent from email addresses ending “@ghwsolicitors.co.uk”
The genuine firm have confirmed to the SRA that they have no connection with the email referred to in the above alert, and that it has not been sent by the genuine Gareth Williams.
What should I do?
When a firm's or individual's identity has been copied exactly (or cloned), due diligence is necessary. If you receive correspondence claiming to be from the above firm(s) or individual(s), or information of a similar nature to that described, you should conduct your own due diligence by checking the authenticity of the correspondence by contacting the law firm directly by reliable and established means. You can contact the SRA to find out if individuals or firms are regulated and authorised by the SRA and verify an individual's or firm's practising details. Other verification methods, such as checking public records (e.g. telephone directories and company records) may be required in other circumstances.