Be on the lookout for scams as Christmas approaches

POLICE in E District are advising residents to be vigilant against fraud and scams in the run up to Christmas.

In some recent scams, fraudsters make contact over the phone and advise that the resident is due a windfall and persuade them to make some type of payment before they receive their fictitious pay out. The fraudster takes the payments and the resident receives nothing.

Police have the following advice: Beware of cold calls even when the caller appears to have personal information such as your address or bank account details and particularly when they request money ‘up front’. Legitimate callers will never be offended if you ask to call back in order to confirm their identity; when doing so always use a phone number that you’ve obtained from previous correspondence or an independent source such as phone book or an official website.

Residents can also obtain details on different types of scams and fraud on the Action Fraud website and can also report any fraudulent activity on the website at www.actionfraud.org.uk or telephone 0300 123 2040.

Never give personal details including banking details to anyone either in the street, on the doorstep, over the telephone or on the internet as these details can be used to steal your identity

Consider registering with the Telephone Preference Service to stop unsolicited telephone calls. This is a free service. Further details can be obtained from www.tpsonline.org.uk or 020 7291 3320. Registration can be made on line or by phone 0845 070 0707

Consider registering with the Mailing Preference Service as this supports the right to choose the mail you wish to receive. Further details can be obtained from www.mpsonline.org.uk or 020 7291 3310. Registration can be made on line or by phone 0845 703 4599. This is a free service.

Consider only registering for the full register when renewing electoral registrations. Electoral registers are updated every autumn and are lists of all the names and addresses of everyone who is eligible to vote. The full register is used for elections, preventing and detecting crime and checking applications for loans or credit. To ensure your name only appears on the full register you must opt out of appearing on the edited register. To do this you should enter a ü in the ‘edited register’ box. This will prevent personal information being made available for marketing and any other commercial activities. Further information can be found on www.direct.gov.uk/en/governmentcitizensandrights

Refunds on services received will generally be made by the billing authority. Anyone who requires further advice should contact E District’s crime prevention officers on 0845 600 8000.