Warning: Emails from "Adams & Co. Solicitors", which may contain or link to malware

18 June 2019

 Emails have been sent claiming to be from "Adams & Co. Solicitors", which may contain or link to malware.

What is the scam?

An email has been sent to a solicitor, claiming to be from "Adams & Co. Solicitors" in relation to a supposed property transaction.

The subject heading of the email seen by the SRA is 'Revised Sales Contract and Memorandum-pdf Expires 06-10-19'. The email appears as if sent from an "Adam Cattell" and requests the reader to click on the link provided to supposedly view the secured message.

A concern is that the link may contain malware if opened.

The SRA does not authorise or regulate a solicitor called Adam Cattell or a firm of solicitors called "Adams & Co Solicitors" (or Adams and Co – in relation to which see below). Any business or transactions through emails from "Adams & Co Solicitors" are not undertaken by an individual or firm authorised and regulated by the SRA.

Is there a genuine firm or person?

There have previously been a number of genuine firms of solicitors called Adams & Co.  However, according to our records these all closed several years ago (most recently in 2011) and they are not believed to have any link to the emails referred to above.

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.