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Fraud, often called Scams, is the fastest growing area of crime and is often not reported.

ActionFraud is the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting centre.

They provide a central point of contact for information about fraud and financially motivated internet crime.

Click here to download a leaflet about Action Fraud.

 

HMRC Scam Calls

We have received a recent report from a CAPASP supporter and Good Neighbour that there is a very persistent new version of the HMRC and Mastercard telephone scams been mentioned before. The new version is an automated call stating that the resident’s internet provider is going to terminate their services and that you must press 1 to be connected to an ‘executive advisor’. Our informant tells us that they received this call 8 times in one morning alone.

As before, please pass on this message far and wide to alert others within your community. The simple advice is to not press 1, or any other key that is instructed, but to simply hang up as I suspect there would be a hefty connection charge or a very threatening or persuasive person awaiting your attention.

Low Cost Loans Scam

Action Fraud has received 63 reports about a scam in which fraudsters target people with offers of “low cost” loans or “free” government grants. What the victims aren’t told is that the money they’ll receive is actually an advance payment for Universal Credit. The criminals use the personal information they’ve obtain under false pretences to make an application in the victim’s name. After the fraudsters have taken their “fee” from the advance payment, the victim is then left to pay back the total amount once their repayments begin.


How you can protect yourself:

  • Never share your personal or financial information with someone you don’t know and trust, especially if it’s in response to an offer of “free money” or a “free grant”.
  • Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) staff will never approach you in the street or ask for your personal/financial details over social media.
  • If you have concerns about your benefits, you should visit www.gov.uk/contact-jobcentre-plus
  • If you suspect your identity may have been stolen, you can check your credit rating quickly and easily online. You should do this every few months anyway, using a reputable service provider and following up on any unexpected or suspicious results.




Message Sent By
Action Fraud (Action Fraud, Administrator, National)

Telephone Scam

We have received two consecutive telephone calls from residents of a village in South Cambs warning about a telephone scam. It sounds like the call was probably automated but it warned the resident that £600 was about to be taken from their Mastercard unless they pressed 1 to connect to a case handler.

Whilst these incidents were both in the same local area, it is likely that the scammers are working through a list organised by geographical area/postcode and therefore there is a strong chance this scam will at some point rear its ugly head in your local area. Please be vigilant to this and pass the message on so that others can be vigilant too.

If you receive a call like this simply hang up and do not press any number instructed in the message as this will likely result in a substantial connection charge or connect you to someone who is very persuasive or threatening. Report the call to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040

Drivers Targeted With Fake Fines

What you need to know

Action Fraud have received an increase in reports and intelligence where elderly victims are being targeted by individuals purporting to be police officers or traffic wardens. The victims are being approached whilst parked in a car park and are told by the suspect that they have parked illegally or broken a speed limit and a photo has been taken of their car for ‘evidence’.

Victims are advised that they will face a substantial penalty fine unless they pay a smaller upfront fee immediately. Victims, who opt for paying the smaller penalty, will be directed to a parking meter and asked to enter their card and PIN. These parking meters have been tampered with by the suspect in order to retain the card.

Once the victim inserts their card and are asked for their PIN, the victims are shoulder surfed for their PIN by the suspect. Once victims input their PIN, the card is retained by the machine and victims are told by the suspect to seek help from the company who operates the parking meter or their bank.

What you need to do

  • If you are suspicious about the authenticity of the fine, do not pay it until you have verified it with your local council.
  • Always shield your PIN from view when using an ATM machine, and never share your PIN with anyone.
  • If your bank card is retained by an ATM machine, contact your bank immediately to inform them.