Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Recent scams reported to Warwickshire Trading Standards Service

04/09/2013 Tesco vouchers scam
Beware emails suggesting you have ‘won’ £1000 in Tesco vouchers and requesting your credit card details to obtain your prize. This is a phishing scam warn Warwickshire Trading Standards. Always delete suspicious emails and never follow links in them or download forms. Follow us:

04/09/2013 Foam Mattress Warning
Nuneaton and Stratford upon Avon residents are warned to beware of door to door sellers of foam mattresses. The callers are claiming the mattresses come from bankrupt stock but Trading Standards Officers are concerned they may be foreign imports that might not meet tough UK fire resistance standards. Always buy mattresses from businesses you trust. Follow us:

04/09/2013 Job Seekers Warned
Warwickshire Trading Standards are warning job seekers to beware of ‘CRB check’ scams. A job seeker from Nuneaton reported that he had received an email offering him a vacancy but he first had to pay up front for a CRB check at a cost of £60, to be paid in Ukcash vouchers. The offer was bogus. If you are ever asked to pay up front using UKcash vouchers, check the offer is genuine. UKcash vouchers are increasingly being used by criminals as an easy (and difficult to trace) way to obtain cash from their victims. Follow us:

04/09/2013 Pension Warning
An Atherstone resident contacted Warwickshire Trading Standards to report receiving an unexpected telephone call from someone who said they had been ‘given permission to look in to people’s pensions’. When pressed they admitted they were calling from South Africa.
Never provide persona or financial information to unexpected callers.
Unscrupulous companies are targeting resident’s pension pots and trying to get consumers to move them to news funds. The funds may deliver poorer returns and the rogue businesses always take very large commissions  – beware! Always seek professional and independent financial advice. Follow us:

04/09/2013 Entitled to PPI
Nuneaton and Warwick consumers contacted Warwickshire Trading Standards after receiving unexpected phone calls from someone who said the consumers were entitled to a £5000 PPI claim. The caller requested the consumers send Ukash vouchers to him (for an undisclosed sum) and then a cheque would be delivered in under two hours!
In a similar case a Rugby consumer was told they were entitled to £3200 PPI claim money if they paid £50 up front in Ukash vouchers. The caller again said they would visit the consumer’s house with the cheque!
The fraudsters all use English sounding names such as Richards, although they are clearly all based abroad.
Fraudsters often ask to be paid in Ukash vouchers as they enable the fraudster to receive the money quickly are not easily traced. Beware! Follow us:

04/09/2013 Pop-Up Computer Scam
A Warwick resident reported to Trading Standards seeing a pop up appear on her computer screen falsely claiming to come from Cheshire Police and demanding the user pay a £100 fine in Ukash vouchers for allegedly accessing ‘dodgy’ websites. These bogus pop ups are generated by computer viruses. Never send any money and clean your PC with an anti-virus program. Follow us:

04/09/2013 Fraudsters Target Desperate Timeshare Owners
Fraudsters are targeting timeshare owners warn Warwickshire Trading Standards. One Warwickshire owner reported receiving an unexpected phone call from a ‘trader;’ who claimed he could remove the consumer’s liability for his timeshare from him. The consumer had been trying to sell his timeshare for some time and agreed to pay £4000 in Ukcash vouchers. The ‘trader’ claimed that the vouchers could not be cashed until the consumer provided full details of the timeshare. However in reality, Ukcash vouchers can be cashed as soon as the recipient has the Ukcash voucher numbers.
In this case the vouchers were cashed immediately and the ‘trader’ did nothing to remove the consumer’s liability for his timeshare. When the consumer complained to the trader he was given a telephone number to contact Ukash but the number turned out to belong to the fraudsters as well!
The consumer later received another call from someone else asking for more money.
Fraudsters target people desperate to sell their timeshares with these sorts of bogus claims. In reality, timeshares are almost impossible to sell and owners have instead been faced with paying the timeshare company they are with to release them from their contract and from their ever increasing maintenance charges. Follow us:

Please feel free to cascade this information to whomever you feel appropriate (including using the information in your newsletters/websites etc.). If you have any information you wish to provide to Warwickshire Trading Standards Service, either for our information, or to appear in future email alerts, please email me.

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Simon Cripwell
Trading Standards Officer
Warwickshire Trading Standards Service
Warwickshire County Council
Old Budbrooke Road Warwick CV35 7DP
Tel: 01926 414039
Mob: 07771 975570
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My normal working days are Monday to Thursday

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