Latest News from Trading Standards

Current Scams 

10/09/2013

1. Please be extremely cautious should you receive a telephone call from someone claiming that they can protect you from unwanted calls. The caller may claim to be ringing on behalf of the BT Telephone Preference Service (this does not exist).

The caller will claim they are aware that you have received many nuisance calls recently, that they could send you details and equipment to help to prevent these calls. The caller may already know your address and know which bank you use. They may even know some or all of your credit/debit card number. The reason for their call is normally to obtain further information in relation to your credit/debit card, such as issue or expiry date, account number, or the security code on the reverse of your card. Giving this information to the caller could lead to unauthorised use of your credit card or to identity theft. If you have given this information you may want to contact your bank and consider asking them to issue you with a new credit/debit card.

BT do not offer a telephone preference service directly, only BT Privacy at Home which is a caller display service. You can prevent unwanted phone calls by registering with the Telephone Preference Service for free. You can do this online at http://www.tpsonline.org.uk or by calling them on 0845 070 0707.

If you have any doubt about the authenticity of the caller NEVER give out your bank or personal details to them. If the caller says that they are from your bank or building society phone them directly on the number that you normally use for them, making sure that you have disconnected the call from the previous caller before dialling. If possible use a different phone – some scammers will stay on the line after you have put the phone down which prevents you from making another call so that when you dial the scammer answers but you think that you’ve got through to your bank or building society. Alternatively, ask the caller to send you details in the post for you to read at your leisure.

If you or anyone you know has received a similar telephone call please contact Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 08454 04 05 06 or visit http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/ . You can also report the incident to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or visit http://.actionfraud.police.uk/
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

2. Trading Standards have been made aware of automated calls that have been received by residents on their landlines offering free telephone calls if the recipient presses the ‘2’ key on the phone. What we believe happens if the consumer presses ‘2’ is that they are put through to a sales person who will then speak to the consumer and try to persuade them to leave their current telephone service provider and to switch to that of the caller. The calls are described as ‘free’ but there is a monthly charge made after joining the service that may amount to more than the consumer is already paying for their current service. Trading Standards would like to remind residents to show caution when dealing with cold callers and to be aware that services that are being offered may not be the bargain that they initially appear to be!