14/03/2019 TV Licence phishing scams

An ongoing TV Licensing phishing campaign, first identified by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) in September 2018, continues to be reported to Action Fraud in high numbers. Fraudsters are sending the public fake TV Licensing emails that are designed to steal their personal and financial information. Since April 2018, Action Fraud has received over 900 crime reports with victim losses totalling more than £830,000.

How you can protect yourself:

  • Don’t click on the links or attachments in suspicious emails and never respond to messages that ask for your personal or financial details.
  • Don’t assume a phone call or email is authentic, even if someone knows your basic details (such as your name or address). Remember, criminals can spoof phone numbers and email addresses to appear as companies you know and trust, such as TV Licensing.
  • Your bank will never call and ask you for your PIN, full banking password, or ask you to transfer money out of your account.

What to do if you’ve fallen victim:

  • Let your bank know as soon as possible and monitor your bank statements regularly for any unusual activity.
  • If you suspect your identity may have been stolen you can check your credit file quickly and easily online. Use a reputable service provider and follow up on any unexpected or suspicious results.
  • If you have been a victim of fraud or cyber crime, report it to Action Fraud at actionfraud.police.uk, or by calling 0300 123 2040.

Message Sent By
Action Fraud

14/03/2019 TV Licence phishing scams was last updated on March 14, 2019.

12/03/2019 Warwickshire Trading Standards Latest Scams Update

House Phone 'Termination': Beware of intimidating calls that state ‘this is a warning, your computer and house phone will be terminated today. Press 1 or 2 to start the elimination program.’ Never respond to these recorded calls. Doing so may lead you to being connected to a fraudster and could mean you receive similar phone calls in the future!

Always put the phone down.

Bogus 'BT' Callers: Fraudsters pretending to work for BT are cold calling Warwickshire residents and stating that their broadband internet will be cancelled. One resident received a call, but wasn’t even with BT! Do not respond to these phone calls and never divulge personal or financial information.

Solar Panel Warning: Solar panel ‘service’ providers are again writing to solar panel owners across Warwickshire. The letters (which are usually addressed to 'the householder’) often claim that the resident’s solar panels are due a ‘free’ service or that warranties are almost expired. These letters, which are usually sent by individuals or businesses that have no links to the householder's original solar panel installer are designed to encourage them to make an appointment, after which the trader may seek to use high pressure sales techniques to convince the householder to pay for insurances, warranties or solar panel parts they may not require.

The Energy Saving Trust provides both information and useful guidance on solar panel maintenance.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

12/03/2019 Warwickshire Trading Standards Latest Scams Update was last updated on March 12, 2019.

06/03/2019 Council tax ‘refund’ warning

Warwickshire Trading Standards has received reports that fraudsters are making unexpected (cold) phone calls to Warwickshire residents, claiming that they are calling from the resident's local district or borough  council offices and stating that the resident is owed a refund on their council tax. The fraudster then asks for the resident's debit or credit card details, so that the 'refund' can be paid on to the card or into their account.

Trading Standards Officers suspect that these bogus phone calls are being made now as new council tax bills for 2019/20 will shortly be sent to residents.

NEVER provide your bank or debit/credit card details to any cold callers, no matter who they claim to be. You could have money stolen from your bank account. If you think a call is genuine, phone the organisation back using a publicly advertised telephone number. Use a different phone or wait a few minutes to ensure the previous caller has hung up.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

06/03/2019 Council tax ‘refund’ warning was last updated on March 6, 2019.

12/02/2019 Roof cleaning ‘surveyor’ warning Bedworth

Nuneaton and Bedworth residents are warned to beware of door knockers claiming to be roofing 'surveyors' offering to clean and treat roofs. The work they offer is grossly overpriced and largely unnecessary.

One Bedworth resident was approached on his doorstep by someone who quoted over £5000 to clean and treat his roof. The caller claimed that his business was carrying out three other roof treatments locally and when the resident refused, the trader tried to lower the price to £2500! Rogue traders almost always claim they are working locally, even if they are based miles away.

Rogue traders often offer roofing work, including cleaning and treating. They do this because it is very difficult for the householder to see what work is being done or indeed to check that any work has been done at all. Rogue roofers who claim to be able to clean and treat roofs often use high pressure jet washers. There is a danger that the use of these tools will actually lift tiles and cause damage to roofs. Further, rogue traders claim that they can treat the roofs to prevent further moss growth. However this treatment is usually nothing more than water!

In some cases rogue traders will take money and do no work at all.

Do not buy goods or services from unexpected doorstep traders

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

12/02/2019 Roof cleaning ‘surveyor’ warning Bedworth was last updated on February 12, 2019.

24/01/2019 TV licence refund notification scam

Warwickshire residents are warned not to respond to, or click on any links in, unexpected emails that suggest they are owed a TV licence refund. These emails may contain attachments that contain computer viruses and links that direct the recipient to bogus websites on which personal and financial information could be stolen.

Delete bogus emails.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

24/01/2019 TV licence refund notification scam was last updated on January 24, 2019.

24/01/2019 PPI scam

A Warwickshire resident reported receiving an unexpected phone call from someone who claimed the resident was owed a PPI claim of nearly £3000. The caller stated that the resident would need to pay solicitors fees of over £350 to receive the PPI award. The resident paid, but when he didn't receive the money, he contacted the caller again who then claimed that a further £400 'tax' would need to be paid!

Never agree to pay money up front to receive a PPI payout, compensation, tax rebate, loan or lottery 'win' etc.. This is called Advanced Fee Fraud

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

 

24/01/2019 PPI scam was last updated on January 24, 2019.

24/01/2019 Cryptocurrency warning and Bitcoin scams advice

Warwickshire Trading Standards are warning residents to be wary of companies that claim to be able to buy and trade cryptocurrencies on behalf of investors. One resident reported losing over £8,000 after investing his money with a cryptocurrency trader who promised guaranteed returns. Some businesses that claim their algorithms and market expertise can generate guaranteed returns are doing little more than gambling with investors money!

Which have produced a new guide to avoid Bitcoin or cryptocurrency scams

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

24/01/2019 Cryptocurrency warning and Bitcoin scams advice was last updated on January 24, 2019.

11/01/2019 Rogue trader warning – Nuneaton

Nuneaton residents are warned to beware of rogue traders door knocking in the town and suggesting to householders that there are loose tiles on their roofs.

This is a common scam employed by rogue traders who know that the householder is unlikely to want to go on to their roof to verify the claim. Once a price is agreed, the rogue traders then usually find more 'work' to do when they are on the roof. They may even damage the roof, fascias or guttering in order to make work for themselves and costs rise quickly.

You can't tell a good trader from a bad one on the doorstep.

Never buy from the door.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

11/01/2019 Rogue trader warning – Nuneaton was last updated on January 11, 2019.

11/01/2019 Premium rate text warning

Some Warwickshire residents have reported unexpected extra charges on their mobile phone bills. One resident reported a charge of almost £4.00 for a service he was unaware he had signed up to and did not want. Described as phone-paid services, phones can now be used to pay for a wide range of content, goods and services including music subscriptions, gaming, donations to charity and voting on TV talent shows. However, mobile phone users can sometimes find unexpected charges on their phone bills because they clicked on pop up adds or other buttons with hidden or obscure terms and conditions, sometimes involving recurring charges.

The Phone Paid Services Authority are the UK regulator for content, goods and services charged to a phone bill.

Follow these steps to prevent and stop unexpected and unwanted mobile phone charges:

  • Be careful of pop up advertisements and other promotions when browsing the internet, especially on a phone
  • Providers of phone paid services are required to contact you to inform you of any charges. These messages aren't spam so don't ignore them. Also bear in mind: you can text the service provider to stop charges, but don't just hit reply. Text 'STOP ALL' to the number which they give you. You can check numbers here
  • Your Mobile Network Operator can also provide you with information about unexpected charges. They can also put a bar on your account for all forms of phone-paid services
  • If you continue to be charged, contact your Mobile Network Operator. They can advise you on stopping future charges if you do not wish to continue to be billed
  • If your issue is still not resolved to your satisfaction, you can report an issue to the Phone Paid Services Authority and visit their website for further advice

 

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

11/01/2019 Premium rate text warning was last updated on January 11, 2019.

10/01/2019 Trading Standards scams round-up: bogus parking fines; Dyson service scam; bogus boiler service

Residents have reported receiving bogus parking fines through the post. The bogus letters ask the recipients to pay by phone. Those who have done so have reported that when they receive the payment receipt, it is for a restaurant! If you receive an unexpected parking fine letter, check with the issuer using contact details in a telephone directory or on a website. Don't simply phone the number provided on the letter. More about parking fines and penalty charge notices

Warwickshire residents have reported receiving unexpected telephone calls from people claiming to service Dyson vacuum cleaners (Dyson do not cold call). The callers claim that the householder's Dyson is due a service and attempt to make an appointment to carry this out. Trading Standards Officers suspect that this is an attempt to gain access to an individual's home in order to either high pressure sell other vacuuming products or carry out unnecessary services. Never agree to a home visit from a cold caller. Put the phone down. Don't provide any personal or financial information.

Some residents have reported receiving unexpected phone calls from people claiming to offer boiler servicing. One Warwickshire resident agreed and paid almost £400 for an annual plan. However, the trader then disappeared and their telephone number was unobtainable. Never buy goods or services from cold callers either at the doorstep or over the phone.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

10/01/2019 Trading Standards scams round-up: bogus parking fines; Dyson service scam; bogus boiler service was last updated on January 10, 2019.

07/01/2019 Student tax scam

Thousands of fraud reports have been received by the tax authority from students at university and colleges across the UK.

Fake emails, which use university addresses in a bid to appear legitimate, may tell people that they are owed money and encourage them to send their personal details.

The recipient’s name and email address may be included several times within the email itself and the email will include links that redirect the recipient to websites where their data is stolen.

The emails often spoof the branding of HMRC, Gov.UK or credit card branding.

Anyone targeted should not click on any links but can report cases to HMRC on their website or by texting 60599.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

07/01/2019 Student tax scam was last updated on January 7, 2019.

07/01/2018 HM Revenue and Customs alert

What you need to know

Action Fraud has experienced an increase in the reporting of malicious calls, voicemails, text messages or emails to members of the public purporting to be from HMRC.

The fraudsters state that as a result of their non-payment of tax or other duty, the victim is liable to prosecution or other legal proceedings such as repossession of belongings to settle the balance but can avoid this by arranging for payment to be made immediately by method such as bank transfer or by iTunes gift cards.

If the victim is hesitant or refuses to comply, the suspect makes a threat such as immediate arrest, bailiffs or in cases where the victim appears to be of overseas origin; deportation.

Often, the period for which the tax is allegedly due is distant enough to guarantee the victim will have little, if any, paperwork or ability to verify the claims. Once the money is paid the suspects sever all contact.

It is vital that the public exercise caution when receiving messages or telephone calls of this nature.

What you need to do

Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information. Just because someone knows your basic details (such as your name and contact details), it doesn't mean they are genuine. Instead, contact the company directly using trusted methods such as a known email address or phone number.

Listen to your instincts. If something feels wrong then it is usually right to question it. No genuine organisation will ask you to pay taxes, bills or fees using iTunes Gift Cards, or any other type of voucher.

Don’t be rushed or pressured into making a decision. Under no circumstances would a genuine bank or some other trusted organisation force you to make a financial transaction on the spot.

Report Phishing attempts. If you receive a call, text or email of this nature and have not lost money, report this as a phishing attempt to Action Fraud.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

07/01/2018 HM Revenue and Customs alert was last updated on January 7, 2019.

18/12/2018 Scams roundup – Internet ‘cut-off scam; Business grant warning; Blackmail emails; Business websites hard sell

Internet ‘cut-off’ scam: Broadband customers are again being targeted by fraudsters who phone them to claim that their Internet will be ‘cut-off’ unless they speak to an ‘advisor’. The ‘advisors’ then attempt to steal personal and financial information using the bogus ‘cut-off' claim as a threat. Never provide personal or financial information to cold callers, whoever they claim to be. If you think a call is genuine, phone them back on a publicly listed telephone number.

Business Government ‘grant’ warning: Warwickshire businesses are warned to beware of websites that falsely claim to offer ‘Government grants’. The websites often target businesses struggling to obtain sources of credit from traditional lenders and that may have made a number of previous online applications or loan web searches. The fraudsters pretend to offer Government grants but ask for a payment up-front before the ‘grant’ is released. When the fee is paid, the fraudster disappears and the grant is never paid. This is an example of an advanced fee fraud.

Blackmail emails: Warwickshire residents have reported having their email accounts hacked before receiving threatening emails that the hacker will send ‘comprising’ emails to the contacts listed in the email account. Always ensure that your email accounts are protected with very strong passwords and where possible two-step authentication (for example, with the use of a mobile phone). Never respond to blackmail threats. Delete suspicious emails.

Business websites hard sell: Warwickshire traders are warned to beware of high pressure sales calls and the 'hard-sell' from cold callers who claim to be offering to sell web addresses that are similar to the trader's own (for example ending in .com instead of .co.uk) The high-pressure sales people often falsely claim that they have another business ready to buy the web address if the trader doesn't act quickly, to force them to act. In some cases the cold callers have even been known to try and sell the traders, web addresses that the trader already owns/has registered. Businesses should always check with their own website designer to ensure that they haven't already registered the website address themselves before responding to any cold caller. Businesses also need to ask themselves, is another business really interested in buying a website address similar to mine, or is this really the hard sell?

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

18/12/2018 Scams roundup – Internet ‘cut-off scam; Business grant warning; Blackmail emails; Business websites hard sell was last updated on December 18, 2018.

11/12/2018 Fake Facebook giveaway vouchers warning

In the run up to Christmas, Warwickshire Trading Standards has received reports of a number of fake Facebook pages offering consumers supermarket vouchers or holidays. These fake pages often contain links to bogus websites designed to steal personal and financial information. The fake pages also encourage people to 'like', 'share' and comment on the pages to make them appear legitimate.

Be wary of any social media messages that encourage you to input credit or debit card details or personal information.

Facebook scam advice

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

11/12/2018 Fake Facebook giveaway vouchers warning was last updated on December 11, 2018.

11/12/2018 Consumers warned to stay away from counterfeit goods this Christmas

Warwickshire consumers are warned to stay away from counterfeit goods this Christmas. Fake goods are rarely manufactured with safety in mind and can be made of materials that are cheap, nasty and sometimes illegal! Consumers should be particularly wary of clothing designed for children toys and electrical products. Fake designer clothing can pose a strangulation hazard, toys can be manufactured with illegal health damaging chemicals and cheap electrical products can be unsafe and pose a fire risk. The sale of counterfeit goods also funds criminal activities including human trafficking, drug smuggling and terrorism. According to data from KPMG, over the past two years, 39 cases involving more than £116 million of counterfeit and pirated goods have been prosecuted in the UK.

How to spot a fake

Report the manufacture or sale of counterfeit goods on the confidential fakes hotline: 0300 303 2636.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

11/12/2018 Consumers warned to stay away from counterfeit goods this Christmas was last updated on December 11, 2018.

15/11/2018 Sim swap scam warning

O2 and Vodafone customers are at risk of Sim swap fraud, Warwickshire Trading Standards is warning residents after a BBC Watchdog investigation. Sim swap fraud takes places when a criminal is able to convince a mobile operator (such as O2 or Vodafone) either online or in person at a high street shop, they they are you. The criminal then asks for a replacement Sim card for your phone. If successful, the criminal now has control over your mobile phone number and could potentially both see and hijack your calls and texts, including those relating to your online banking. They could then attempt to steal money from your bank account. If your Sim stops working or your phone experiencing an extended period of loss of signal, these could be signs of Sim swap fraud. Contact your service provider immediately. This is Money reports on BBC Watchdog report

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

15/11/2018 Sim swap scam warning was last updated on November 15, 2018.

09/11/2018 Door to door mattress sellers operating again

Warwickshire residents are again being targeted to door to door mattress sellers. The sellers often employ high pressure sales techniques to encourage a sale and Trading Standards are also concerned that the mattresses may not meet UK fire safety regulations. Don't buy at the door. If in doubt, keep your door closed.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

09/11/2018 Door to door mattress sellers operating again was last updated on November 9, 2018.

29/10/2018: Scams roundup – phishing emails, spoofing landlines and insulation cold callers

Insulation cold callers. Warwickshire residents are urged to be vigilant and beware of companies that cold call and offer home insulation whilst falsely claiming to be operating on behalf of the Government or local council. Residents may be misled and the companies may be breaking the law.

Apple Pay targeted by fraudsters. Warwickshire residents are urged to beware of phishing emails arriving in their email inboxes falsely purporting to come from Apple. The emails may display an '@support' name and inform the recipient of a 'purchase'. The recipient is urged to follow a link to a bogus Apple login page from which Apple ID and other confidential information can be stolen.

Spotify Premium phishing email. Spotify Premium streaming service users are warned to beware of bogus emails asking them to verify their subscription information. Recipients are again taken to a bogus Apple ID login page, from which passwords can be stolen.

Fake TV Licence refund emails. Don't fall for bogus TV Licence refund emails, Warwickshire Trading Standards is warning. These emails encourage recipients to visit bogus websites from which personal and financial information can be stolen.

Local landline telephone numbers 'spoofed'. With increasing numbers of people choosing not to answer phone calls displaying international or regional numbers, expecting them to be high pressure sales calls or fraudsters, scammers are turning to 'spoofing' local landline numbers. They do this by using easily obtainable technology to alter Caller ID so that when they phone, the recipient's phone shows a local number in the Caller ID display and not the real one. The landline number the fraudsters use is likely to belong to another unsuspecting person who won't realise what has happened until they begin to receive hundreds of calls to their landline from people trying to speak to the fraudsters! Fraudsters also try to 'spoof' the telephone numbers of banks and similar organisations to try and make their victims think they are speaking to a genuine business.

HMRC paying 'refunds' direct! Fraudsters are sending out bogus emails claiming recipients are due an immediate tax refund that can only be claimed online and will be paid on to their credit card. The fraudsters direct their victims to a bogus HMRC online 'portal' which asks for credit card details and other financial and personal information. The customer portal web page suggests that it will expire on the day the recipient received the email, encouraging them to act quickly without thinking/verifying the claim or asking a friend or family member first.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

29/10/2018: Scams roundup – phishing emails, spoofing landlines and insulation cold callers was last updated on October 29, 2018.

05/10/2018 Home insulation scam warning

Warwickshire residents are being phoned and told that the moisture level of their loft insulation requires checking due to a change in the law. Warwickshire Trading Standards believes this is a high pressure sales approach from unscrupulous insulation companies that want access to people's homes and lofts in order to sell them insulation products that they may neither need nor want. Don't buy goods or services from cold callers.

For genuine and unbiased home energy advice, visit: Ofgem the UK regulator

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
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  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

05/10/2018 Home insulation scam warning was last updated on October 5, 2018.

05/10/2018 Scam tax arrest threat

Warwickshire residents are again receiving telephone calls from fraudsters falsely claiming they owe HMRC (warning from Which) tax and will be arrested if they don't pay. One resident reported receiving a demand for £1100 and was told to pay £50 a month via the Post Office. The threat of arrest was made if they didn't pay up. Never provide personal or financial information to cold callers. Always put the phone down.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

05/10/2018 Scam tax arrest threat was last updated on October 5, 2018.

31/08/2018 Doorstep gardening rogues warning Nuneaton

Rogue traders offering 'gardening services' are operating door to door in Nuneaton, Warwickshire Trading Standards is warning. The rogue traders are understood to be both door knocking and leafleting the area. Reports suggest that they offer to tidy gardens (cut back hedges etc.) for a few hundred pounds before finding more 'work' to do and demanding thousands of pounds in payment.

Never buy goods or services from doorstep traders. Keep your door closed!

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

31/08/2018 Doorstep gardening rogues warning Nuneaton was last updated on August 31, 2018.

22/08/2018 Rugby roofing rogue trader warning

Residents are warned to beware of rogue traders operating door to door in the Rugby area offering roofing and loft insulation work. The approach is usually to falsely claim that a few tiles are loose on a householder's roof before looking for more work they claim is needed.

Some residents have paid hundreds of pounds to have a few roof tiles replaced (unnecessarily) and thousands more to replace perfectly adequate loft insulation. The rogues often ask for cash up front for materials, but carry out little if any work (and none of value) before disappearing. They may be falsely claiming to represent nationally recognised building companies.

Never buy goods or services from doorstep traders. Keep your door closed!

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

22/08/2018 Rugby roofing rogue trader warning was last updated on August 29, 2018.

25/07/2018 Bedworth ‘arrest warrant’ for unpaid tax scam

Residents in Bedworth and across Warwickshire are warned to beware of phone calls from fraudsters claiming to be HMRC. The callers attempt to frighten residents by falsely suggesting that the Police are on the verge of arresting them for unpaid taxes. The fraudsters then ask the residents to pay the 'tax bill' often demanding they pay using iTunes gift card voucher codes 

A number of Bedworth residents have recently reported receiving these phone calls, but the problem is widespread across Warwickshire.

  • HMRC will never use texts to tell you about a tax rebate or penalty or ever ask for payment in this way.
  • Telephone numbers and text messages can easily be spoofed. You should never trust the number you see on your telephones display.
  • If you receive a suspicious cold call, end it immediately.

More from Action Fraud

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

25/07/2018 Bedworth ‘arrest warrant’ for unpaid tax scam was last updated on July 25, 2018.

17/07/2018 Pushy doorstep charity collectors (Nuneaton) may be distraction burglary attempt

Nuneaton residents are warned to beware of doorstep charity collectors operating in the town who are reported to have pushed their way in to elderly people's homes. One complaint related to a couple receiving a knock at the door from someone with poor English asking for a £10 donation for 'disabled charities'. When the couple refused they dropped their request to £5 and then £2 and attempted to push their way in to  the couple's property. Trading Standards Officers are concerned that these persistent approaches may be a prelude to a distraction burglary and warn residents to keep their doors closed.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

17/07/2018 Pushy doorstep charity collectors (Nuneaton) may be distraction burglary attempt was last updated on July 17, 2018.

13/07/2018 Tax fraud scams, bogus solar panel checks and bitcoin investments

Tax fraud arrests scam
A number of Warwickshire residents have reported bogus phone calls from fraudsters claiming to be HMRC. The callers attempt to scare residents by suggesting they have committed tax fraud and a warrant has been issued for their (the residents) arrest. They then demand the resident pays a fine/tax owed.

Bitcoin investment scams
A Warwickshire resident reported losing over £3000 after being cold called and offered an opportunity to ‘invest’ in Bitcoins via an online platform. The resident transferred the money which was then almost immediately withdrawn by the fraudsters.

Free solar panel ‘health check’
Owners of solar panels are warned to beware of letters and cold calls from bogus/high pressure companies offering solar panel ‘health checks’ that are in reality an opportunity to sell the resident highly priced and unnecessary warranties and additional solar panel equipment.

Bogus BT callers
Attempts are being made by fraudsters to obtain the banking details of Warwickshire residents by making calls falsely claiming to be BT and other telephone service providers. The fraudsters telephone unsuspecting consumers, claiming that their broadband speed is not as fast as it should be and offering them £200 refunds. They then ask for the individuals’ bank details to so they can ‘pay the money in’. In reality, bank details stolen in this way are used for criminal activity.

NEVER provide personal or financial information to people who cold call you, either over the phone or on the doorstep. You can't tell a good trader from a bad one on the doorstep. Don't buy goods/services/investments from cold callers.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

13/07/2018 Tax fraud scams, bogus solar panel checks and bitcoin investments was last updated on July 13, 2018.

06/07/2018 Bogus advertisers warning to Warwickshire small businesses

Small businesses in Warwickshire are warned to beware of cold calls from bogus publishers/advertisers pretending to sell advertising in Warwickshire County Council publications. These individuals, who appear to be using difficult to trace mobile phone numbers are reported to be both persistent and aggressive.

Businesses are advised not to buy goods or services from cold callers, or to say or do anything that might be perceived as a verbal contract to buy.

Rogues operating in this area use high pressure sales techniques and pre-prepared scripts to trick unsuspecting businesses in to agreeing to pay for advertising in publications they produce that have little or no circulation and are therefore essentially worthless. They often falsely claim to be working on behalf of a local authority or charity and that the publication will have some social benefit (drugs awareness, fire or road safety, health etc.)

Businesses that do fall victim to these fraudsters are then aggressively chased for money with the threat of court action.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

06/07/2018 Bogus advertisers warning to Warwickshire small businesses was last updated on July 6, 2018.

04/07/2018 Driveway cleaner warning

Warwickshire residents are warned to beware of doorstep traders targeting elderly and vulnerable people offering to jet wash driveways and patios and charging extortionate prices. The traders were using false names and addresses and may be leafleting local areas.

Residents are urged to avoid buying goods or services from unexpected doorstep traders. 

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

04/07/2018 Driveway cleaner warning was last updated on July 4, 2018.

21/06/2018 ‘Internet’ shut off scam

People across Warwickshire are receiving bogus phone calls from fraudsters falsely claiming that their Internet access will be turned off unless they pay a bill of £3,000. Whilst many people will know that these phone calls are fake, Trading Standards Officers are concerned that some vulnerable residents may be extremely worried at receiving such a phone call and agree to pay the money or reveal their bank details to the fraudsters.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

 

21/06/2018 ‘Internet’ shut off scam was last updated on June 21, 2018.

14/06/2018 Rogue traders operating in the Kineton area

Warwickshire Trading Standards has received reports of rogue traders operating in the Kineton area. Dressed in fluorescent work wear, rogue traders were believed to be going door to door offering to clean block paving. They were described as being very persistent and refusing to provide a business name, address or phone number or provide written quotes or other paperwork.

Warwickshire Trading Standards advises residents not to buy from unexpected doorstep traders.

If in doubt, keep your door closed.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

14/06/2018 Rogue traders operating in the Kineton area was last updated on June 14, 2018.

06/06/2018 Cryptocurrency trader scam warning

Warwickshire Trading Standards are warning residents to be wary of companies that claim to be able to buy and trade cryptocurrencies on behalf of investors. One resident reported losing over £8,000 after investing his money with a cryptocurrency trader who promised guaranteed returns. Some businesses that claim their algorithms and market expertise can generate guaranteed returns are doing little more than gambling with investors money!

Investors should be aware of the following:

  • The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) will not compensate you for any losses from trading cryptocurrencies.
  • Websites may appear professional and glossy, but don't assume that means an investment opportunity is genuine.
  • Criminals can exploit the names of well-known brands or individuals to make their scams appear legitimate.
  • Never be rushed in to making an investment and beware of promised returns that sound too good to be true.
  • Get impartial advice from an independent financial adviser.
  • Beware especially of unexpected phone calls or emails offering you investment opportunities.
  • Whatever the investment opportunity check the FCA Register of financial services firms. If a firm does not appear on the register then it is best not to trade with that firm, transfer funds, or provide any banking details.

It's Scams Awareness Month 2018

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

 

06/06/2018 Cryptocurrency trader scam warning was last updated on June 6, 2018.

06/06/2018 Rogue traders operating in Nuneaton warning

Doorstep rogue traders offering to 'clean and treat' block paving and driveways are operating in Nuneaton warn Warwickshire Trading Standards. The rogue traders are reported to be door knocking and offering to clean driveways and treat them with a 'sealant' (which may just be sand and water). Consumers reported being asked to pay £100 for the work before the cost trebled as work got underway. The traders are also reported to be very persistent and may be targeting elderly residents.

Trading Standards advises residents not to buy goods or services from unexpected doorstep traders.

If in doubt, keep your door closed. 

It's Scams Awareness Month 2018

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

06/06/2018 Rogue traders operating in Nuneaton warning was last updated on June 6, 2018.

04/06/2018 Exhall area residents warned of doorstep rogue traders

Doorstep rogue traders offering to clean block paving are operating in the Exhall and surrounding area warn Warwickshire Trading Standards. The rogue traders are reported to be door knocking and acting in both an aggressive and persistent manner. Trading Standards advises residents not to buy goods or services from unexpected doorstep traders.

If in doubt, keep your door closed. 

It's Scams Awareness Month 2018

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

04/06/2018 Exhall area residents warned of doorstep rogue traders was last updated on June 4, 2018.

04/06/2018 TSB related scams

Action Fraud is warning the public about a sharp rise in criminals sending out fake text messages and phishing emails claiming to be from TSB.

Since the start of May, there have been 321 phishing reports made to Action Fraud – an increase on the previous month where 30 reports were made.

In the same reporting period, there have been 51 reports of cybercrime to Action Fraud which mention TSB – an increase on the previous month, where 24 reports were made.

TSB phishing scams

It's Scams Awareness Month 2018

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

04/06/2018 TSB related scams was last updated on June 4, 2018.

14/05/2018 Bogus ‘DHL’ delivery emails

Warwickshire residents are warned to beware of bogus emails that falsely purport to come from DHL suggesting that the company has attempted and subsequently failed to deliver a parcel to their home address. The email contains a link to a bogus website where recipients are encouraged to provide personal and financial information and  asked to pay for the delivery of these non-existent parcels. DHL fraud awareness

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

14/05/2018 Bogus ‘DHL’ delivery emails was last updated on May 14, 2018.

11/05/2018 ‘Council’ door knockers warning and bogus tax refund scam

Residents are warned to beware of doorstep callers after a Stratford upon Avon householder reported receiving an unexpected knock on the door from someone claiming to 'work for the council' who wanted to come in to the property to 'have a look around' with a view to improving loft insulation.

Whilst seeking to make your home energy efficient is a good thing and might help you to reduce your energy bills, there are also lots of scams associated with energy saving products. You might for example be encouraged to buy products that cost you more than you can ever hope to save in reduced bills (i.e the products will never pay for themselves) or be convinced in to buying products when your home is already adequately insulated. Rogue traders operating in the home insulation industry, once in a property, are also known to find other 'problems' that they can charge residents for, when in reality no work is necessary.

Warwickshire Trading Standards is unaware of any council employee who would visit your home unexpectedly, offering to 'take a look' at your insulation. Protect yourself from doorstep crime. Use a door chain and never let anyone you don't know or trust in to your home. Never buy goods or services on the doorstep.

The Energy Saving Trust and Citizens Advice both publish helpful information and advice on saving energy on their websites.

Another 'HMRC tax refund' phishing scam is circulating. The email claims that each recipient is owed £752.94 and is encouraged to claim the 'refund' by clicking on a link in the email.

Never click on a link in a suspicious email. You could be putting your computer at risk of computer viruses. Recipients may also be asked to reveal personal or financial information and even pay up-front admin fees to receive the non-existent refund.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

11/05/2018 ‘Council’ door knockers warning and bogus tax refund scam was last updated on May 11, 2018.

10/05/2018 Scam alerts from National Trading Standards – FCA loan fee scam warning, horse buyer warning, TV subscription warning

FCA Loan Fee Scam Warning: The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is today urging the public to be alert to the growing threat of loan fee scams targeting borrowers. This plea comes as last year over £3.5 million was lost to loan fee fraud and reports to the FCA consumer helpline increased by 44%.

Victims of loan fee fraud are often targeted while searching for loans online and are then contacted by criminals offering a loan. The criminal tells the victim they have to pay an upfront fee for the loan which they ultimately never receive. Once the first payment is made victims are often persuaded to make multiple payments – last year the average loss was £740. more

Horse Buyer Warning: Action Fraud is warning horse buyers about fraudulent ‘for sale’ adverts. Criminals are placing fake adverts on reputable equestrian sale websites to scam victims out of large amounts of money. Criminals will even support their claims of the horse’s existence by supplying copies of relevant ownership documents, pictures and videos of the animal.

Although the adverts claim the horses are located in the UK, victims are later told that they’re located elsewhere in Europe and that the horse’s shipment can be arranged via an animal transport company.

On agreeing to buy the horse, victims are then contacted by someone who claims to be an agent of the transport company, who asks them to pay the purchase price and shipping costs of the animal either by money transfer or a direct transfer of funds into a nominated bank account. more

TV Subscription Warning: Action Fraud have noticed an increase in reports where criminals are offering victims discounts on their TV subscription, or told their account needs to be renewed. 

Criminals are cold-calling victims, purporting to be from a Television provider offering a discount on their monthly subscription. Victims are usually told their subscription needs to be renewed, part of (or all) of their TV equipment has expired or they are due an upgrade on their equipment/subscription package.

In order to falsely process the discount, the criminals asks victims to confirm or provide their bank account details. The criminals may also request the victim’s identification documents, such as scanned copies of passports.

Later victims make enquiries and then discover that their TV service provider did not call them and that the criminal has made transactions using the victim’s bank account details. more

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

10/05/2018 Scam alerts from National Trading Standards – FCA loan fee scam warning, horse buyer warning, TV subscription warning was last updated on May 10, 2018.

10/05/2018 Warwickshire residents hit by ‘Martin Lewis’ fake advertisements scam

Warwickshire residents have been hit by the 'Martin Lewis' fake advert scam A resident reported receiving an unexpected email containing an advertisement for Bitcoins that used a picture of Martin Lewis. The resident did not realise that the advertisement was a scam and followed a link in the email to a website and where he spent several hundred pounds on a 'Bitcoin investment'. However, the resident did not receive the Bitcoins and was unable to get his money back. The fake 'Martin Lewis advertisements' have also been circulating on social media.

Money Saving Expert (MSE) founder Martin Lewis does not endorse products, nor does MSE.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

10/05/2018 Warwickshire residents hit by ‘Martin Lewis’ fake advertisements scam was last updated on May 10, 2018.

09/05/2018 FIFA World Cup scams

Warwickshire residents are warned to beware of scams that are using this year's FIFA World Cup name and logo. A Nuneaton resident reported receiving a bogus 'International FIFA World Cup lottery letter' that stated she had won £900,000. Bogus lotteries work by asking 'winners' to send money and/or personal and financial information to receive their non existent prize. Letters normally ask recipients to keep their 'winnings' secret so that victims do not discuss the bogus letters with others who might realise they are being scammed.

Remember, you can't win a lottery you never entered. Never respond to bogus lottery letters.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

09/05/2018 FIFA World Cup scams was last updated on May 9, 2018.

08/05/2018 Doorstep builder and internet shutdown

A Warwickshire resident was approached by a ‘builder’ who knocked on his door unexpectedly. The trader did not provide any cancellation paperwork or other details of their business and asked for money up front for building materials. No money was paid. Do not buy goods and services on the doorstep.

A resident reported receiving a phone call from someone pretending to be BT and claiming that the consumer’s internet was going to be shut down unless the caller was allowed remote access to the consumer’s computer. Fraudsters use these ruses in order to gain access to computers to steal personal and financial information.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

08/05/2018 Doorstep builder and internet shutdown was last updated on May 8, 2018.

04/05/2018 Bogus garden sprays and dodgy claims companies making bogus ‘Trading Standards’ claims

A resident contacted the service after receiving a knock on the door from someone offering to spray a ‘liquid’ on their front wall which they claimed would prevent weeds/plant growth. The resident strongly suspected that the liquid was just water! You can't tell a good trader from a bad one on the doorstep. Don't buy from unexpected doorstep traders.

A Warwickshire resident received an unexpected phone call from a ‘claims company’ to say that they were owed £4000 in bank charges compensation. Already unsure about the call, their suspicions were confirmed when they were told that Trading Standards had asked the company to contact householders! The fraudulent caller would probably have asked for an upfront 'admin fee' to release the non existent compensation, had the call continued.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

04/05/2018 Bogus garden sprays and dodgy claims companies making bogus ‘Trading Standards’ claims was last updated on May 4, 2018.

03/05/2018 Telephone Preference Service scam and doorstep gardening warning

A Coleshill resident contacted Warwickshire Trading Standards after receiving several phone calls which may have come from a call centre located in the Far East. The callers all falsely claimed to represent the Telephone Preference Service and asked for debit card numbers (including the three digit security number on the reverse of the card) to sign up to the service. Residents should be aware that the TPS is a free service and TPS would never cold call or ask for card details/payment.

Rugby Borough residents are warned to beware of an individual going door to door across the area offering to cut trees, hedges and bushes and do odd jobs around the garden. The trader was reported to be door knocking in a no cold calling area. Warwickshire Trading Standards advises residents not to buy goods or services from unexpected doorstep callers.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

 

03/05/2018 Telephone Preference Service scam and doorstep gardening warning was last updated on May 3, 2018.

03/05/2018 Copycat websites and bogus publishers

Warwickshire residents have reported paying money to copycat websites. One resident received an email to remind him to renew his European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). The email, which turned out to be bogus directed him to a copycat website where he ended up paying £27 for a card which is actually free of charge. Apply for a free of charge EHIC card here Another resident paid a copycat website £60 for a fishing rod licence that should have cost him significantly less. Apply for a fishing licence here

When applying for any official form or document, always visit the GOV.UK website first

In recent years there has been a drive to remove copycat websites from the top of Internet search pages and this may be encouraging the operators of these websites to turn to sending out links via unsolicited emails.

Copycat website warning

Small businesses are warned to beware of unexpected doorstep approaches from unscrupulous traders offering advertising. Not only does the advertising often appear in publications that have little or no circulation (making them essentially worthless), but terms and conditions in the small print can lead to businesses having to pay out a great deal more than they originally expected. Small businesses are advised to research all advertisers and read terms and conditions thoroughly before signing on the dotted line. Business to business contracts are not covered by consumer doorstep selling regulations.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

03/05/2018 Copycat websites and bogus publishers was last updated on May 3, 2018.

02/05/2018 Share investment scam and bogus mattress sellers

A Warwickshire resident lost thousands of pounds following an investment on a bogus share website. The resident received a cold call from a 'financial expert' who convinced him to invest £1000 via a investor website. The resident's investment appeared to be doing well and the 'adviser' then called again and convinced him to invest a much higher sum. The 'adviser' appeared to be carrying out trades on behalf of the investor on the website, but the money soon disappeared. The 'adviser' could not be contacted and the website was closed down.

Fraudsters use bogus websites to give the illusion that successful share dealing is taking place in order to convince investors to invest more money. They then disappear and the website is closed. Investment fraud

Warwickshire residents are warned to beware of door to door sellers of beds and mattresses. A resident reported paying £250 for a divan and memory foam mattress which when it was delivered was not what was promised. The trader could not then be contacted to resolve the issue. In addition, mattresses and upholstered furniture sold in the UK must meet strict fire safety regulations, but cheaper non-compliant products are sometimes imported from abroad and sold door to door.

It can be hard to tell a good trader from a rogue on the doorstep and even harder to return faulty or misdescribed items if a problem is later discovered. Do not buy from the door.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

02/05/2018 Share investment scam and bogus mattress sellers was last updated on May 14, 2018.

27/03/2018 Investment scam, bogus internet warning and illegal PPI claims scam

Investment scam: Warwickshire consumers are warned to beware of unexpected phone calls from bogus share dealers. One resident reported receiving a phone call and being offered an investment opportunity. He was directed to a website where he invested £1000. His investment appeared to be doing well and he was later able to withdraw some 'profits'.  The resident was then encouraged to make a significantly higher investment after which the 'investment' company disappeared and their website shut down. The resident lost his money.

In reality, there will not have been any investment gains. Fraudsters use small amounts of money obtained dishonestly to pay out to victims to make their investments appear genuine and worthwhile. The fraudsters hope that the investors will then invest a significantly higher amount. When this happens, the fraudsters close down their operation and disappear, setting up later as a new enterprise with a new website.

Protect yourself from share dealer scams. Advice from the Financial Conduct Authority

Bogus internet warning: A number of residents have reported receiving phone calls, some of which have been automated, stating that their Internet connection is compromised and if they are not willing to speak to a 'technician' their Internet will be cut off. This is an attempt by fraudsters to scare residents in to unnecessarily paying them to 'fix' their Internet connection when in reality there is nothing wrong with it at all. NEVER divulge any personal or financial information to cold callers. ALWAYS put the phone down.

Illegal PPI claims scam: Some Warwickshire residents have reported receiving bogus phone calls from fraudsters claiming that it is now illegal for consumers to apply for PPI compensation themselves, suggesting instead that they must allow the caller to carry out the work on their behalf. This is NOT true! Consumers can apply for PPI compensation themselves if they wish. They can use a PPI claims company but they will normally be charged a percentage of any compensation obtained.

PPI guide from Money Saving Expert

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

27/03/2018 Investment scam, bogus internet warning and illegal PPI claims scam was last updated on April 12, 2018.

14/03/2018 Green energy scams

Many businesses are involved in the legitimate sale of green energy devices, for example solar panels. Unfortunately Warwickshire Trading Standards has become aware of fraudsters targeting this business sector to sell green energy devices that don't work and expensive and unnecessary maintenance contracts. This has resulted in substantial financial losses to many consumers who have fallen victim to this fraud.

Residents who have solar panels fitted to their homes are particularly at risk of being targeted. Fraudsters, who make their approaches either on the doorstep or over the phone often use the following tactics:

  • Informing the resident that their solar panel supplier has ceased trading and the panels installed may be dangerous.
  • Advising the resident that new legislation requires them to have a device installed, and failure to install it would mean the emergency services would not attend if the solar panels caused a fire.
  • Implying that they have taken over from the original supplier and are offering a “free health check”.

A 'sales' visit is undertaken and the resident is sold a device and/or maintenance contract for their system. These devices may not be of any use and the maintenance contracts, which could last up to 20 years may not be insurance backed and therefore may be of little potential value and have no protection if the company ceases trading. In some instances, fraudsters are taking payment up-front for these contracts (often by encouraging the householder to take out a loan), rather than regular payments and then disappearing, providing no service at all.

PREVENTION ADVICE

• Don't buy goods or services from unexpected doorstep sellers or telephone cold callers. You can't tell a good trader from a bad one on the doorstep!
• Be wary of special offers or warnings about your home.
• Contact your original installer to confirm any information supplied about their current trading status.
• Never pay up front, and don't pay by cash. Pay with a cheque (which can be traced if necessary) or if the service or goods cost more than £100 then use a credit card as this offers extra protection.
Doorstep Selling Regulations give you 14 days to cancel the agreement. If you cancel, any monies that you have paid should be returned to you.
• The trader must give you a written notice of your cancellation rights when you agree the contract. If the trader doesn't provide you with this information, they commit a criminal offence.
• The trader can only carry out work within this cancellation period if you have given your agreement in writing. Do not feel pressured into signing a document allowing the installation to be undertaken immediately.
• If you have been contacted by a company that you have concerns about, contact Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

14/03/2018 Green energy scams was last updated on April 12, 2018.

12/03/2018 HMRC Tax refund scam warning

Warwickshire Trading Standards are again warning residents to beware of emails that falsely purport to have been sent by HMRC stating that the recipient is due a tax refund of £359.96. The emails may be entitled 'Gateway Authentication Payment Receipt | We're processing your return soon'. The emails suggest that the tax refund will be paid directly on to the recipient's credit card. Credit card details are then requested and used to make fraudulent transactions. NEVER follow a link in a suspicious email and try to avoid following any link in an email relating to banking, shopping accounts or social media accounts or similar. When visiting these websites, always type the internet address in to the web browser.

Further information

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

12/03/2018 HMRC Tax refund scam warning was last updated on April 12, 2018.

05/03/2018 ‘Ghost broker’ bogus car insurance warning

Drivers are being warned to steer clear of bogus car insurance brokers, sometimes called 'ghost brokers' who sell fraudulent car insurance, leaving drivers uninsured. 'Ghost brokers' typically carry out the fraud by one of three ways: they will either forge insurance documents, falsify the driver’s details to bring the price down or take out a genuine policy, before cancelling it soon after and claiming the refund plus the victim’s money.

More information from Action Fraud

Check to see that your car is properly insured on the Motor Insurance Database

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

05/03/2018 ‘Ghost broker’ bogus car insurance warning was last updated on April 12, 2018.

27/02/2018 Rogue roofers warning

Leamington Spa and Warwick residents are warned to beware of rogue roofers operating locally. Householders are either approached unexpectedly on the doorstep or respond to flyers for guttering and home improvements. The rogue roofer then claims the householder has some loose or broken tiles on the roof which they offer to  fix or replace for between £30 and £60. The roofer then falsely claims that he has spotted more problems either on or inside the roof  (often in places the householder can's see), and claims that urgent work needs carrying out (he may use 'props' such as a piece of rotten wood). Householders are then asked for cash deposits up front to pay for materials and scaffolding. Work is then not completed at all or further attempts to extort money are made.

You can't tell a good trader from a bad one on the doorstep. NEVER buy goods or services from unexpected doorstep callers. 

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

27/02/2018 Rogue roofers warning was last updated on April 12, 2018.

27/02/2018 Inland Revenue scams

Warwickshire Trading Standards has received further reports concerning bogus 'Inland Revenue' phone calls demanding 'tax payments' with the threat of 'legal action'.

Always put the phone down. Never reveal any personal or financial information.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert

27/02/2018 Inland Revenue scams was last updated on April 12, 2018.

27/02/2018 Doorstep charity warning

Warwickshire residents are warned to beware of unexpected doorstep 'charity' collectors. A Warwickshire resident reported that she had had an unexpected visit from someone who claimed to be collecting on behalf of the Air Ambulance and entered the resident's home before asking for their banking information. The resident became suspicious and the individual left.

Do not invite unexpected doorstep visitors in to your home or divulge your banking details.

  • Make a scam/rogue trader complaint to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.
  • Warwickshire Trading Standards Website Facebook Twitter
  • Sign up to scam alerts at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams
  • Avoid rogue traders. Use Warwickshire Trading Standards No Rogue Traders Here approved trader scheme
  • Please feel free to pass on or re-publish this email alert