Advice offered to help people avoid a scam

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Vulnerable residents are being offered advice to help prevent them becoming victims of postal scams.

As part of National Scam Awareness Month, 19 residents who responded to fake prize draws were offered advice and support by North Tyneside Council’s trading standards and adult social care teams.

I welcome this important work to help prevent our residents becoming victims of postal scams

Coun John Harrison

The individuals were referred by The National Scams Hub, which intercepted payments to the fraudulent firms.

Residents were invited to send a £5 administration fee or order low-value goods, with one found to have sent more than £150.

Coun John Harrison said: “I welcome this important work to help prevent our residents becoming victims of postal scams.

“The companies behind these fraudulent schemes have no morals – they seek to make a profit at the expense of vulnerable people.

“When an offer seems too good to be true, it usually is and in those circumstances, people should report the approach as a possible scam.”

The Scams Awareness Month campaign asks people to keep two things in mind when they receive an unsolicited approach – don’t be rushed and don’t be hushed.

People should take their time to make a decision and get their facts together before parting with their money or personal information, and speak out when they think they have spotted a scam.

Scams can take a variety of forms: by post, phone, email, online, or via a knock on the door.

North Tyneside’s Trading Standards Service, delivered by Capita, is one of 93 trading standards services across the UK to become a member of the National Scams Hub.

The aim is to make residents more “scam aware” and help prevent them from falling victim to the schemes.

Anyone targeted by a scam, or know someone who has, can report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

Advice is also available from the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06 or visit www.citizensadvice.org.uk