During the Covid-19 pandemic, there has been a national increase in the number of frauds and scams as criminals are taking advantage of people spending more time at home, on the internet and on their phones.
Fraud can have a devastating impact and long lasting implications for victims.
As a result, we are encouraging people to speak to elderly friends or relatives, as well as anyone who is vulnerable, about the dangers and what they should do to help them protect themselves.
These scams can be executed through very sophisticated methods and so it’s vital you’re aware of the common signs to spot the scam at the earliest opportunity.
Common doorstep scams can come in the form of:
Overpriced home maintenance or improvements
Bogus charity collections
More information on the common doorstep scams can be seen here.
Our advice is to not answer the door to anyone you don’t know or who cannot provide valid ID.
Also, do not buy goods from door step sellers as the quality of the goods cannot be guaranteed and there is no way to return items or request a refund should there be an issue with the goods.
Some of the most common telephone scams can come in the form of…
Someone pretending to call you from a bank
Claiming to be calling from the helpdesk of an IT firm
Scam text messaging and phishing
If you do get a scam call or text, it is important to remember the below advice:
Don’t reveal personal details. You should never give our personal or financial information (such as your bank account details or your PIN) over the phone, even if the caller claims to be from your bank.
Hang up. It may feel rude to hang up on someone, but you have the right not to be pressurised into anything.
Ring the organisation. If you are ever in doubt whether a caller is genuine, you can always ring the company or bank they claim to be from. Make sure you find the number yourself and not one provided by the caller.
More information on common scams can be found here. This includes guidance and advice surrounding the above types of fraud, as well as online shopping, email fraud, romance fraud and postal fraud.
If you suspect you have been a victim of fraud, report it to your bank and call Action Fraud.
Don’t feel embarrassed, it can happen to anyone.