As part of a nationwide tour to educate the UK about fraud, Santander is bringing Phish and Chips to London, a unique van that accepts phishing emails and ‘smishing’ texts as payment for fish and chips.

The van will be in Westminster to meet with the public on Monday 6th November between 12pm-1.30pm. British F1 Driver Jenson Button has taken the wheel to serve up a fish and chips lunch.

The van has been touring the nation to raise awareness of scam messages - serving over 3,000 portions of fish and chips to the public.

It was created after research revealed an estimated 600 million scam attempts were made in the UK over email, text and telephone in the last 12 months - the equivalent of over 1.6 million scam messages each day.

Reza Attar-Zadeh, head of customer experience at Santander UK, said: “Santander takes the fight against fraud very seriously – we have seen the life-changing impact it can have on people’s lives.

“Consumer awareness is absolutely key to tackling what is currently one of the biggest threats to the security of people’s finances.

“Our Phish & Chips van is a way of delivering our three key fraud prevention messages in an engaging way while educating people that both banks and consumers have a role to play in keeping the fraudsters at bay.

“Phishing has been around for a number of years, originating with emails that were unsophisticated and obviously fraudulent.

“However, today phishing emails have evolved. They can appear in inboxes as convincing and genuine communications from consumer brands, but there are signs to look out for such as spelling mistakes, generic greetings rather than your name and suspicious looking email addresses.”

The van has undertaken a month-long nationwide tour visiting Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Leicester, Glasgow, Leeds, Cardiff and Bristol.

It was created following research showing how the nation is in the grip of a phishing epidemic, with a staggering three quarters (74 per cent) of Britons targeted by scammers with phishing emails, ‘smishing’ (SMS phishing) texts and vishing calls.

Santander’s research shows that one in seven people don’t know the terms phishing, smishing or vishing at all, while almost three quarters of people are not fully familiar with their meaning.

In addition to dishing out fish and chips, Santander UK is serving up its top tips and advice on avoiding becoming a victim of phishing scams:

  • Never share your Santander One Time Passcode (OTP), PIN number or online banking password with another person, not even Santander staff;
  • Never download software or let anyone log on to your computer devices remotely during or after a cold call;
  • Never enter your online banking details after clicking on a link in an email or text message.

"Being behind the wheel of the Phish and Chip van around London was certainly a different driving experience!,” said Button.

“It was a lot of fun being part of the tour and serving fish and chips to the public in exchange for their scam emails.

"It’s been eye opening to see how many people receive these emails every day!”