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Update from IWASP Scam Alerts
Trading Standards have a few unusual scams to warn you about this week:
- We have received a report from a resident who received a call from a funeral plan company offering to carry out her funeral much cheaper than her existing plan. She engaged with them initially but then realised that they might not be genuine and on speaking to a local funeral directors she realised that the offer they were making was unrealistic and it was probably an attempt to get her details – a phishing scam. When checking the number they called from online she realised that there were a lot of negative reports about them so instructed her bank not to allow payments to be taken.
- We would like to make you aware of a new service launched this week. The scheme is urging people to “stop, hang up and call 159” to check that calls purporting to be from your bank are for real. The idea is to help those who believe they have been contacted by scammers claiming to be their bank, or by fraudsters who encourage them to transfer money. According to Stop Scams UK, criminal gangs stole over £470 million from individuals and small businesses last year by pretending to be a bank or other service provider, encouraging consumers to falsely make a payment or transfer money. When calling 159, you’ll be taken through an option menu in which each bank that has signed up to the service is read aloud. Customers are then able to use their telephone keypad to be put through to their bank. You’ll then be directed through to your bank’s customer service department. Note that calling the service will cost the same as making a national rate call, which means if you’ve got inclusive minutes it’ll be taken from those. For those who bank with firms not yet involved in the 159 pilot – you should continue to contact your bank by using the number on the back of your debit or credit card
A couple of scams targeting Island businesses have been reported so please be wary of
- Callers purports to be from the High Court Enforcement and claims there is a CCJ against your company. he is calling from a mobile and is very vague around any information he has due to GDPR! This is highly likely to be a scam aimed to intimidate businesses into paying money or handing over banking details. DO NOT respond, hang up straight away – no legitimate organisation would contact you in this way.
- Calls from companies that want you to advertise in their brochure. They quite often claim to be providing a service such as working to prevent crime and make the Island a safer place. These brochures very often don’t exist and your “advert” will go nowhere. Don’t engage with anyone that contacts you to promote something – take a step away and time to think.
Reporting a Scam
- For advice on scams call – Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline: 0808 250 5050
- To report a scam call – Action Fraud: 0300 123 2040
If you are concerned about somebody you care about or for more information on scams visit www.iwasp.org.uk
WightFibre Customer Service Team