Warning: Emails misusing the name and details of Deloitte LLP and Michael Castle
20 May 2020
Emails to creditors of a company from "firstname.lastname@example.org", falsely claiming to be from "Michael Castle" of Deloitte LLP.
What is the scam?
The SRA has been informed that emails have been sent to third parties, falsely purporting to be from "Michael Castle, managing partner at Deloitte".
We understand the emails have been sent using the email address: email@example.com and to date have been largely sent to creditors of The Dream Lodge Group (Walsham Chalet Park Ltd), seeking transfers or payment of money.
The SRA understands that some of the emails have been followed up with a telephone call from an individual claiming to be "Michael Castle". The emails and telephone calls misuse the name of a genuine firm and solicitor (see below).
Any business or transactions through the email address "firstname.lastname@example.org" is not undertaken by a firm or individual authorised and regulated by the SRA.
Is there a genuine firm or person?
Deloitte is the business name of Deloitte LLP, a genuine firm authorised and regulated by the SRA (in relation to certain aspects of its multi-disciplinary services). Its head office is at 1 New Street Square, London, EC4A 3HQ and the genuine website for the firm is: www2.deloitte.com.
The SRA also authorises and regulates a genuine solicitor called Michael Castle, who is a partner at Deloitte LLP. The genuine email address for Michael Castle ends with "@deloitte.co.uk".
The genuine firm and genuine solicitor, Michael Castle, have confirmed that they have no connection to the emails and telephone calls referred to in the above alert.
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.