I had a phone call yesterday from a distressed reader who thought that she had received a phone call from “AMAZON PRIME”. She has an Amazon Alexa on her son’s account and they wanted money for using it. (untrue) She had also on their instructions, used her tablet to visit a “website” and was just about to leave the house to get £4000 from the bank. At this point she did a double take, remembered a recent e-news about scams, and thought to ring me on her mobile……..(just in time)..
I cannot stress how import it is to:
DON’T INTERACT IN ANY WAY with any Scam caller on the phone
DON’T PRESS 1
DON’T TALK TO THEM
DON’T LISTEN TO THEM
just PUT THE PHONE DOWN.
Once you start to talk to these people they have you….they are cold, vicious, cruel, immoral B***ARDS!
Once you start to talk to them or INTERACT IN ANY WAY….they have you caught like a fish on the line.
You willNEVER RECEIVE A PHONE CALL FROM AMAZON!
I can’t stress that too much so I’ll say it again, You willNEVER RECEIVE A PHONE CALL FROM AMAZON!
The tablet was switched off until it can be checked for spyware
The Police (tel 101) were informed and an incident number given.
The BANK was advised who cancelled her cards and re-issued new ones.
Last year a person in my company was scammed so I have a deep hatred of them. These people pray on peoples goodwill, trust, and honesty. The good values that people have.
I’ve had two scam emails in the last 24 hrs, one from the Police and one from the Parish Council!
There really does seem to be an increase at the moment in all types of scams and cons. Probably because everyone is at home, cut off and vulnerable. Obviously the golden rule is don’t believe anyone…it too good to be true!
Also, before you do ANYTHING, speak to a neighbour or a friend.
Here are the Police messages…
Police are aware of a number of different SCAMS which have been taking place across the County.
Amazon Prime Account Fraudsters are telephoning residents stating they are wish to refund an amount of money to their Amazon Prime Account and request remote access to their victim’s computer in order to make the refund. This is a scam. Do NOT give any details or allow access to your PC.
HMRC Fraudsters are contacting residents saying they are from HMRC and threatening them with arrest or prosecution if they do not pay a sum of money to them which they say is owing. This is a scam. Do NOT give them your bank details or any other personal information (ie National Insurance Number) and do NOT agree to pay.
Courier Fraud Fraudsters are contacting residents by telephone and pretending to be either police officers or bank employees. They will invent a story about your bank card being cloned, or about counterfeit currency at their local bank branch. Victims have been tricked into handing over their bank cards or cash, while others were instructed to purchase high value jewellery to give to a “courier”. Should you receive any such calls, try to note the callers telephone number by dialling 1471 immediately after the call. Contact your Bank to ensure everything is OK and let them know what has happened.
O2 / Mobile telecommunications providers Fraudsters are informing people that there are issues with their Direct Debit making it impossible to process the latest bill. They suggest that in order to avoid fees, you should update your billing information via the hyperlink provided. If you receive a text message like this, do not click on the link(s) or follow any instructions given to you.
NEVER disclose your PIN number or give out your bank details or withdraw cash. Do not engage in conversation and if in any doubt, hang up the telephone.
Many of these fraudsters tend to target the elderly. Please share this information with elderly relatives, neighbours and friends, so that those who are most likely to be targeted are aware.
We had “knocker” today on our doorstep called “Matthew McLaren”, I know that because he showed me cheques that others had made out to him and I also saw plenty of cash in his back…obviously Stinchcombe is good. However, when I asked for his licence from Stroud Council, he showed me the above which I could have made up myself.
They are doorstep callers who target areas offering small household products for sale. These callers may claim to be ex-convicts attempting to mend their ways, however they are not part of any recognised rehabilitation scheme.
Please warn your neighbours, particularly elderly or vulnerable neighbours, not to open the door to strangers or buy or sell on the doorstep. Some doorstep callers may offer poor quality goods at inflated prices and if a caller is not genuine, they may be gathering information for future crime.
Please keep in mind that if cold callers don’t get any sales in your area, they are less likely to return.
How they work
The sellers may say that they are on a “rehabilitation course” arranged by probation services or other organisations trying to find people work. This is not the case and often they are known criminals. Probation services do not run such schemes.
They may show a card which claims to be a “Pedlars Licence” or work permit. The following is an example of one that has been frequently seized by the police. This is not valid and they are breaking the law if they are using anything like this.
They may also hand over a card saying they are deaf or dumb.
According to the police, the bag of household products is supplied by someone who employs them. The males / females are supplied with a full bag of household products (including the typical tea-towels!) and charged a minimal sum for the contents – it used to be £35. They can keep whatever they make, above this amount.
Usually they are deposited in an area from a transit van and given a list of streets to work. An hour or so later they are picked up and dropped off in another location. They often work from 9am to 9pm.
They will knock on a door, offering cleaning items which they know are cheap and of very poor quality; the householder also knows they are rubbish but that is part of the scam. Many people will purchase items and pay them out of their good nature as they have fallen for their storey or, just to get rid of them. There have been cases of elderly residents handing over large sums as these people can be very persistent and confrontational.
The price for whatever has been purchased usually comes to a note – usually £10. The householder disappears to get this – this is when the scam begins, according to the police. When the note is handed over, the lad examines the condition and how long it took the person to get it. If it is crumpled, they accept it and move on. If it is crisp flat and new – they are much more interested and may engage the person in more conversation, to obtain details about them. As they leave they will smell the note. If it is slightly musty – this is an indication that there is more in the property. Those addresses are noted. The addresses of elderly / vulnerable / gullible people are all noted.
These are handed to the employer and there is a small amount of cash handed over for each one.
These addresses are then sold in prisons and pubs. If there is a later break-in, the employer expects a further cut of the proceeds.
Police advise that in almost every case of a stop check – the lads have long strings of convictions for burglary and violence. They use the skills learnt during their criminal activity to identify possible targets.
TURN THEM AWAY
REMEMBER if cold callers don’t get any sales in your area, they are less likely to return.