NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH

Copied below are Neighbourhood Watch and Community alerts that have been issued in the last 12 months. This will be kept up to date on an “as and when” basis.

For those of you who are not members of the Binley Woods NhW scheme and wish to receive these messages direct, please fill in and submit the form to Join Neighbourhood Watch and I will arrange an application form to be delivered for your completion.   Or you can add your e-mail address to this website by going to Get told about new posts by email on the right of this page.  That way you will get the Neighbourhood Watch updates I post on this website plus the other news and events that are posted here.

Finally, one piece of advice, if ever you need to dial 101 for a Binley Woods related incident, ask for Warwickshire Police otherwise your call may be directed to WM police in Coventry.

December 2012

A TIMELY MESSAGE FOR CHRISTMAS – SAFETY UNWRAPPED

As Christmas gets nearer you might be starting to think about buying presents and stocking up on supplies.
However, criminals are no different in this respect, and at this time of year rich pickings can be found.
We want you to let your hair down this party season – not your guard!

Here are some useful tips to help you enjoy a crime-free festive season:

·        Make sure gifts and valuables, wrapped and unwrapped, are out of view and not visible from any windows.
This applies in the car as well as in the home.

  • Mark any expensive gifts you receive for Christmas with a UV pen or property marking service.

This will make it harder for burglars to sell the items and allow police to return them to you.

Call your local policing team on 101 for advice about property marking products.

You can register your property with www.immobilise.com which is endorsed by a number of police forces.

  • Photograph valuable property and log any serial numbers.

Don’t store the information on a laptop, as that might be stolen too – keep it on a memory stick in a safe place.

  • Don’t put gift packaging out for recycling or leave it sticking out of your bin

– thieves will notice boxes for branded products like laptops, TVs or accessories that could indicate an expensive piece of kit somewhere in the house.

The safest thing to do is to break down any cardboard boxes or fold them inside out so that you cannot see the branding. You can then store them out of

sight inside your home until you can dispose of them at a local recycling site.

  • Lock all doors and windows, leave a light on and draw the curtains when you go out at night.

Keep your doors and windows locked from the inside even when you are inside your home.

  • Visible burglar alarms, exterior security lighting, timer lighting switches and leaving the radio on help to deter thieves and give the impression that somebody is at home.
  • Bolt and padlock garden gates and make sure you don’t leave ladders out, or other things that burglars could easily use to climb on.

Remember to lock your garden shed and store your tools inside; it stops burglars using your tools to break into your house.

Consider fitting extra padlocks to gates, sheds and garages.  Don’t keep presents in the garage or shed.

If you’re going away, ask a trusted neighbour to pop in every now and then and turn the lights on and off, draw the curtains,

collect the mail and generally make the house look occupied.
And it goes without saying, make sure everything is properly locked up before you leave and the burglar alarm

– if you have one – is set.
Cancel your newspapers, magazines and milk deliveries.

Why not have a word with your neighbours and offer to keep an eye on their home, especially if they are going away?
You don’t have to be a member of Neighbourhood Watch to be a good neighbour, and even if you don’t have much contact with your neighbours,

Christmas could be the perfect time to break the ice and have a friendly chat.

Burglars wander around looking for chances.

The best opportunity for the police to catch them in the act is for you to spot them before they break in.
Wherever you live, keep your eyes open and if you see anything suspicious, call 999 immediately. 
You can also call 101 to contact your local policing team in a non-emergency situation.

November 2012

NHW RU Incidents at homes in Ferndale Road and Earls Walk, Binley Woods & Millennium Way, Wolston 

Incident 41 of 7 November

During the night of 6 into 7 November offenders stole a 55 plate Ford Transit van from outside a home in Ferndale Road, Binley Woods.

Incident 38 of 23 November

During the night of 22 into 23 November offenders stole a silver BMW Sport from outside a home in Earls Road, Binley Woods.

Incident 228 of 23 November

Between 8am and 2pm on 23 November offenders entered a home in Millennium Way, Wolston through a rear door.  Once inside the house, the offenders carried out a very untidy search of the whole building before making off with a television and other items.

If you have information that you believe may be connected to any of these incidents please contact Police on 101.  Please also remain alert, on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your own or neighbouring homes and please report anything of concern to Police on 101.

27/11/2012 Fraudulent Credit Brokers

Warwickshire Trading Standards are warning consumers looking for loans to beware of cold calls from bogus loan companies offering to arrange loans for a fee. One consumer was contacted by phone and offered a £3000 loan if he agreed to pay £110 first. He paid and was then asked to send a further £280 by Western Union transfer. The consumer paid again, a total of £390, but the loan was not forthcoming and the trader disappeared.

Never respond to unsolicited texts or phone calls offering loans.

27/11/2012 Bogus Benefits Claims

Consumers, warn Warwickshire Trading Standards, should not respond to international callers claiming they are owed £1000 in benefits. Such calls are advanced fee frauds where the caller will try and steal money or personal or financial information in return for providing the non-existent ‘benefits’.

27/11/2012 Scam computer ‘fix’ companies

Warwickshire Trading Standards are again warning consumers not to engage with bogus businesses who claim your computer is broken and needs repairing.

Consumers should never allow anyone they don’t know or trust to take remote access of their PC. Some consumers have reported receiving eight calls a today from such fraudulent companies.

Postal scam email from Parcel Delivery Service

Crimestoppers has recently received a number of enquiries regarding a chain email warning people about a postal scam that could leave you £315 out of pocket.                     

This email is a hoax and the information contained in it is not true. If you receive this information please ignore it.

The email in circulation is similar to this:

” Can you circulate this around especially as Xmas is fast approaching – it has been confirmed by Royal Mail. The Trading Standards Office are making people aware of the following scam:

A card is posted through your door from a company called PDS (Parcel Delivery Service) suggesting that they were unable to deliver a parcel and that you need to contact them on 0906 6611911 (a Premium rate number).

DO NOT call this number, as this is a mail scam originating from Belize. If you call the number and you start to hear a recorded message you will already have been billed £315 for the phone call.

If you do receive a card with these details, then please contact Royal Mail Fraud on 020 7239 6655.”

The statement from PhonepayPlus about the chain email about an alleged postal scam which is being circulated on the internet.

PhonepayPlus, the UK premium rate telephone services regulator, is aware that a chain email about an alleged postal scam is being circulated on the internet. The email refers to the Royal Mail, Trading Standards and ICSTIS (PhonepayPlus’ former name).

PhonepayPlus appreciates that recipients of the email may want to find out more information about the alleged scam and has therefore issued the following statement:

  • The chain email refers to a service (operating on 0906 661 1911) that was shut down by PhonepayPlus (then ICSTIS) in December 2005. PhonepayPlus subsequently fined the company that was operating the service, Studio Telecom (based in Belize), £10,000.
  • The service is NO LONGER running and has NOT been running since December 2005.
  • You do NOT need to contact PhonepayPlus, or the Royal Mail, about this service as it was stopped almost six years ago.
  • If you receive a copy of the email warning you about the alleged scam, please do NOT forward it to others. Instead, please forward this statement from PhonepayPlus.
  • If you receive a delivery card through your letterbox which you do not believe is genuine and which asks you to dial a premium rate number, you can contact PhonepayPlus on 0800 500 212 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm) for further guidance.
  • For more detailed information about PhonepayPlus’ work, please visit www.phonepayplus.org.uk.

14/11/2012 Suspicious Doorstep Caller – Ryton
 
Warwickshire Trading Standards Service has been alerted to three male doorstep callers acting suspiciously in the Ryton area.

Reports suggest that two individuals have been door knocking whilst a third conceals himself and watches. It is unclear whether or not they are attempting to sell something or if this is an attempted distraction burglary.

Trading Standards advise householders not to buy at the door from unexpected callers. It is best not to open your door at all but if you choose to do so, always put the security chain on and never allow unexpected callers in to your home.

OCTOBER 2012

NHW RU Incidents at homes in Redhill Road, Long Lawford and Heather Road, Binley Woods

Please be aware of the following incidents which have occurred at homes in your area over recent days:

Incident 200 of 17 October

Between 8am and 2pm on 17 October offenders jemmied open the latch of a ground floor rear window at a home in Redhill Road, Long Lawford and entered the premises.

Once inside, the offenders carried out an untidy search of all rooms before making off with 2 flat screen televisions, a laptop computer, a Playstation 3, an IPod, the rear door keys and the spare keys to a Peugeot vehicle.

Incident 216 of 17 October

Between 10.30am and 3pm on the same date, offenders entered another home in Redhill Road and stole several televisions and many items of jewellery.

Incident 292 of 17 October

During the night of 16 into 17 October offenders removed all four hubcaps from a van parked outside a home in Heather Road, Binley Woods.

Please remain alert, on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your own or neighbouring homes and please report anything of concern, to Police, on 101.  Thankyou

For those of you with email, please find attached Halloween safety advice and a poster which can be printed off and displayed to deter trick or treaters.

24/10/2012 Door to Door Bed Seller Warning: North Leamington
A North Leamington resident reported to Warwickshire Trading Standards Service yesterday that he was approached on the doorstep by someone who claimed to be delivering beds to a house nearby, but ‘could not find the address’!

The trader then asked the householder if he wanted to buy any beds or mattresses. The caller was driving a plain white van.

Mattresses should meet UK fire safety standards, but it has been the practise of some unscrupulous traders to sell cheap imported mattresses that do not meet these regulations, door to door.

Consumers are advised to buy their products from reputable sellers to whom they can return the goods if there is a problem.

For more information on door to door sellers visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>

24/102012 Your Bank Account Has Been Compromised! Warning
Consumers should beware of unexpected phone calls from people claiming to be calling from your bank warn Warwickshire Trading Standards.

Bogus callers will claim that your bank card has been used fraudulently and may ask you to key in your PIN number as part of a bogus security check.

NEVER REVEAL YOUR PIN NUMBER OR YOUR CARD’S SECURITY NUMBER.
Fraudsters are also asking weary consumers to phone the bank back to ‘prove’ they are genuine.
Should a consumer do this the fraudster simply stays on the phone line, keeping it open. If the consumer does not realise, they end up talking to the fraudster again but think they are speaking to a genuine bank official.

The fraudster is then able to obtain other personal or financial information because the consumer is convinced they are speaking to a genuine member of bank staff.

Some fraudsters even play dialling tone sounds down the phone to convince the consumer they are phoning for real!
Consumers in this situation should either phone back much later (a fraudster is unlikely to stay on the line for a long time) or phone their bank using a different phone.

For more information on scams visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>
The email alert system is a quick, simple and cost effective means by which Warwickshire Trading Standards can alert interested individuals, community organisations, businesses, charities and others to the latest Trading Standards issues/scams etc.

25/10/2012 Bogus Penalty Charge Notice Email
Drivers are warned to beware of bogus penalty charge notice emails which have been sent to thousands of email addresses. The notices, which are crude phishing emails, attempt to get the recipient pay a bogus parking fine by following a link in the email. Those who do risk losing their money and compromising their credit/debit card details.

The email mentions the Penalty Charge Notice website. There is more information here: www.penaltychargenotice.co.uk/phishing-email-scams/ <http://www.penaltychargenotice.co.uk/phishing-email-scams/>

Warwickshire Trading Standards advises consumers not to open phishing emails and to delete them.
For more information on phishing emails visit: <http://tinyurl.com/94zko73>

23/10/2012 ‘Police’ E-Crime Pop-Up Scam
Warwickshire Trading Standards has received a number of complaints from concerned residents who have received pop-ups on their computers demanding that they pay £100 ‘fines.

The pop-ups often suggest that the consumer has accessed a forbidden website or downloaded copyright material.
In some cases the consumer is told that their PC is ‘’locked’ until the ‘fine’ is paid.
This is a scam and probably an indication that your PC has been infected with a virus.
Consumers must not send any money (payment is often requested by paypal) and instead run your anti-virus software to deal with the problem.

For more information on computer security visit: www.getsafeonline.gov.uk <http://www.getsafeonline.gov.uk/>
23/10/2012 Google Email ‘Lucky’ Winner Scam
If you have received an email from Google to let you know you are the ‘lucky’ winner then beware warn Warwickshire Trading Standards.

The bogus ‘WINNING NOTIFICATION FROM GOOGLE WINDOW LIVE INCORPORATION’ emails claim to come from the Google Security Department.

The email claims the recipient has won £750,000.00, simply for using Google’s search engine!
Like all bogus email of this kind it requests a range of personal information which can be used to commit identity fraud and recipient s who respond will be asked to send money to ‘help’ the transfer of the non-existent prize.

Further, the email even goes on to warn the recipient not to discuss the email with anyone else. This request is often included to help ensure they are not told by others that they are a scam victim.

Never open or respond to bogus emails.
For more information on scams visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>
The email alert system is a quick, simple and cost effective means by which Warwickshire Trading Standards can alert interested individuals, community organisations, businesses, charities and others to the latest Trading Standards issues/scams etc.

22/10/2012 The Electricity ‘Saving’ Box That Costs You Money!
As winter approaches and consumers look to save money on their energy bills, Warwickshire County Council’s Trading Standards Service has found one device that will definitely NOT save you money!

Cavity wall and loft insulation, switiching your energy supplier and putting in double glazing are likely to bring your energy bills down. But plugging in a small device with a green light on it won’t and could be dangerous.

One Warwickshire consumer raised the issue with Trading Standards after her elderly mother had received a phone call from someone falsely claiming to represent her energy supplier. The caller offered to send her a device that they claimed would ‘save her money’. The call came from outside the UK.

An ‘electricity saving box’ then arrived in the post and after another phone call the elderly lady was scammed in to paying £99 for the device.

These devices, which consumers are encouraged to plug in to ‘save’ them electricity, have already come to the attention of Trading Standards Services in other parts of the UK. They appear to come from China, although the supplier details on the invoice are often given as New York. They have been tested and found to be unsafe as well as not delivering any tangible energy savings.

The devices themselves come in boxes with instructions in broken English, including advice not to ‘be too rude’ when plugging the devices in!

A safety recall has been issued but consumers are warned that these devices can still be purchased from outside the UK on the Internet and it is likely that fraudsters will continue to use the ‘energy and money saving’ ruse to sell them!

19/10/2012 Theft from motor vehicles

NHW RU We need your help to combat a recent rise in vehicle crime across Rugby

This message is sent on behalf of Paul Collett of Warwickshire County Council and Rugby Safer Neighbourhood Teams:

Help Required

In the last few days we have seen an increase in the number of vehicles being targeted by thieves and equipment being stolen from inside. This trend is spread across the borough. In the last few years these thefts have been reducing and we want to stop this trend before it affects more victims. The most common items stolen are Satnavs, laptops and tools. The Police have increased patrols and are investigating the crimes.

We need your help to spread the following message. One of the most common targets are commercial vehicles parked outside people’s homes. We are asking if you know any neighbours who work from home and/or have a commercial vehicle, such as vans or pickups, parked outside their homes who may need to be extra vigilant. If you feel comfortable talking to your neighbours about this, can you please pass on the message below.

We are asking them to remove any Satnavs, laptops, phones and tools overnight from vehicles where possible and to secure their vehicles when on site working. Warning stickers that state that all tools have been removed are available free of charge at Rugby Police station. If they are worried about vehicle security, they are asked to contact their local Safer Neighbourhoods Team.

To find their local Safer Neighbourhoods Team visit http://www.safer-neighbourhoods.co.uk/your-neighbourhood/rugby-district or call 01788 541111

11/10/2012 Plumber prosecuted for Misleading Consumer
A plumber who misled an elderly Leamington Spa resident has been successfully prosecuted by Warwickshire County Council’s Trading Standards Service.

Mr Timothy Barnes who trades as T Barnes Plumbing and Heating, Barton Drive, Knowle, Solihull was found guilty of two consumer protection offences.

These offences related to Mr Barnes carrying out and charging for unnecessary work and failing to carry out work to a professional standard.

For more information visit: <http://news.warwickshire.gov.uk/releases/2012/10/11/plumber-prosecuted-for-misleading-elderly-leamington-spa-consumer/>

11/10/2012 Businesses Warned to Beware of ‘Parliamentary’ Approach
Warwickshire businesses are warned to beware of approaches from high pressure sales people selling advertising space in reports and yearbooks linked to Parliament.

The cost of the adverts in these publications can run in to thousands of pounds and Trading Standards Officers are concerned that businesses may think the approaches are being made by people who are working for or on behalf of Parliament or Government Departments.

But these approaches are instead coming from private traders with no official remit what so ever.
Before agreeing to advertising, businesses and other organisations such as schools should ensure that the publication is legitimate and will be printed and distributed in quantities large enough to make the advertising worthwhile.

08/10/2012 ‘Financial Reward’
A Wellesbourne consumer contacted Warwickshire Trading Standards to alert them to a letter she had received from someone in Hong Kong advising her she was due a financial reward of £8,730. All she had to do was to send £15.95 in advance to receive the cash!!!

For more information on advanced fee fraud visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>
08/10/2012 ‘Police’ Magazine Scam
An Alcester based trader called Warwickshire Trading Standards after receiving an unexpected phone call. The caller claimed to be phoning from Warwickshire Police and said the trader has supported a police campaign on drink and drugs awareness a year ago and did he want to support the campaign again?

The trader asked for a telephone number from the caller who provided him with one. This turned out to be the phone number of the local Aldi Store!

The caller had a Liverpool or Northwest accent.
Rogue publishing firms often claim to call on behalf of local emergency services in order to trick businesses in to buying advertising or publications with little or no circulation. The publications are often safety related but they are almost never produced.

For more information on publications scams, visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>
08/10/2012 Doorstep Charity Warning

A Leamington Spa resident telephoned Warwickshire Trading Standards after receiving an unexpected visit from a bogus St Johns Ambulance charity worker. The doorstep caller tried to gain entry to the house after the resident refused to give a donation.

Residents are advised to check the ID of anyone who claims to be collecting on behalf of a charity. Never provide your personal or financial details to unexpected callers.

08/10/2012 Scam BT Caller
A Wellesbourne Neighbourhood Watch member contacted Warwickshire Trading Standards after receiving two unexpected phone calls from people claiming to be from ‘BT technical support’.

The callers both claimed to be phoning to offer services including, online security and the removal of junk and corrupted files.

Both callers gave English sounding names – David and Anthony, but these are thought to be bogus as such calls are typically made from outside the UK.

In reality, these calls are often made from India or the Far East where people in call centres are employed to phone consumers (often claiming to be from Microsoft or BT) and trick them in to allowing them access to their PC’s. Once gained, the fraudsters charge the consumer for unnecessary work or for placing unnecessary programmes on their PC. Further, some may use this opportunity to steal personal or financial information or place viruses on the PC.

Consumers are strongly urged not to allow any unexpected callers access to their computers. Microsoft will not make unexpected phone calls to consumers and BT technical support staff are equally unlikely to. If you are a BT customer and think a call from BT is genuine, ask to phone the person back on a publically listed number (for example in a telephone directory or on a genuine website).

For more information on bogus computer callers, please visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>

For advice on computer security, visit: www.getsafeonline.org.uk <http://www.getsafeonline.org.uk/>

03/10/2012 ‘Loft Inspection’ Warning
Warwickshire Trading Standards has been alerted to the activities of an individual claiming to be from the Government and visiting homes to carry out a ‘compulsory loft inspection’. This occurred in the Leam Terrace area of Leamington Spa.

Whilst there are Government backed loft insulation schemes (visit: www.energysavingtrust.org.uk <http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/> for details), householders must not allow uninvited/unexpected callers to enter their home to carry out any form of check, whether this is for loft insulation or for another reason.

The caller may have been attempting to sell loft insulation or possibly trying to carry out a distraction burglary.
03/10/2012 Ukash Advice
Warwickshire Trading Standards has recently seen an increase in the use of Ukash vouchers by fraudsters who request that their victims pay them in this way. Some fraudsters appear to prefer this payment method to requesting that their victims wire them money using other legitimate businesses such as Western Union.

The victims are asked to purchase cash vouchers through a local high street shop and use the reference code to send the payment by email or over the telephone.

Ukash vouchers are a legitimate and popular means by which some people pay for goods and services. Ukash themselves are concerned that fraudsters are using this payment method and have therefore set up a 24hr hotline. People who suspect they have been the victim of a fraudster and have paid them using Ukash vouchers can contact Ukash to try and get the payment blocked.

Victims of fraudsters should act quickly. The number to call is: 00800 2478 5274 (open 24 hours).
03/10/2012 Canada Bogus Olympic Lottery Warning
Warwickshire Trading Standards are warning consumers to beware of a new lottery letter scam described as ‘Euromillions Commonwealth Lottery’. Winners are advised that they have won £800,000 despite never having entered the lottery at all.

As with all scam lotteries, ‘winners’ are asked to reveal their personal and financial information on a detailed form, including bank account details and even next of kin.

Those that complete such forms are likely to receive requests for money to help the ‘transfer’ of their ‘big win’. They also risk becoming victims of identity theft.

You can’t win a lottery you never entered! Never respond to these bogus letters – bin them!
For more information on scams, visit our website: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>

SEPTEMBER 2012

NHW RU Incidents in Rugby Road, Brandon and Birchwood Road, Binley Woods

Please be aware of the following incidents which have occurred at homes in your area over recent days:

Incident 132 of 18 September

At 12.20pm on 18 September witnesses saw suspicious persons and activity in the grounds of a vacant premises in Rugby Road, Brandon.  An air rifle was stolen.

Incident 72 of 20 September

Further suspicious activity was reported at the vacant property on Rugby Road at just before 10am on 20 September.

Incident 371 of 26 September

Between 7.30 and 11.05pm on 26 September offenders smashed the glass in the rear patio windows of a home in Birchwood Road, Binley Woods with a small flat instrument.

Once inside the premises the offenders carried out an untidy search before making off with a kettle and a gold necklace.

Please remain alert, on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your own or neighbouring homes and please report anything of concern to Police on 101.  Thankyou.

NHW RU We need your help to locate Nottingham Knockers operating across Warwickshire

Following our message of last week warning residents about rogue door-step callers or Pedlars, Warwickshire Police have gathered more information regarding the individuals believed to be involved. There is also a very robust operation in place to deal with these pedlars when they appear in the county but we need your help to locate them.

The individuals calling themselves ‘Nottingham Knockers’ who are operating across the county are an organised travelling band of known criminals who have numerous offences and convictions between them.
They are targetting the homes of the elderly and the vulnerable across Warwickshire and neighbouring counties selling inferior household products such as cloths and dusters.

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Any member of the public selling door to door needs a pedlars licence. These licences or certificates are issued by the Chief Constable of the pedlars home county, are valid for a 12 month period and allow the pedlars to operate anywhere in the country. If the caller on your doorstep does not produce a pedlars certificate then they should not be selling goods and are probably up to no good!

Some pedlars have produced an A4 laminated card with their picture on it and will tell you that the law requiring them to have a Chief Constable issued pedlars certificate has been repealed and they no longer need a licence/ certificate. THIS IS NOT TRUE.

The documents they produce may have Connexions or Probation Department on them and again, these are not the required document that they should be using.

We need you to call 101 or 01926 415000 to tell us where these pedlars are operating. We will then endeavour to send out Police Officers to question the pedlars and to examine certificates. If an offence is believed to have been committed the pedlars can be arrested or reported if necessary.

Once word goes around that Warwickshire is ‘hot’ on checking pedlars and their documentation, the pedlars will go elsewhere and leave the elderly and vulnerable residents of Warwickshire in peace.

Please see the attached document containing examples of pedlars certificates.
REMEMBER: Help us to help you – Call 101 to report their whereabouts or 999 if you believe that a crime is in progress.

NHW NW Beware and report chalked symbols on or around your property – Linked to burglaries

Several suspicious incidents have been reported in Warwickshire, over recent days, where home owners have noticed symbols chalked onto the walls of their homes or onto surfaces nearby.

There is evidence that these chalked symbols are used by thieves as a means to identify a property ripe for burglary.

Please see the attached document which details some of the symbols used.

If you spot chalked symbols around your own or other homes please contact Police immediately on 101 and describe the symbols to the operator.  If possible please also take a photo of the symbol if you have a camera on your mobile phone.

Thankyou for your vigilance and your help.

17/09/2012 Hong Kong Scam Letter
Warwickshire Trading Standards are warning consumers to beware of ‘advanced fee fraud’ letters, being sent to Bidford residents. The letters, which in reality are sent by criminal gangs, are purportedly sent by Huo Ho of Hong Kong and claim that the recipient is due a share of $10.5m following the death of a long lost relative with the same name.

As with all advanced fee fraud letters, anyone showing an interest in claiming their share will be asked for money in advance to help the transfer of the non-existent millions along. For more information visit: <http://tinyurl.com/8jjglnr>

17/09/2012 Email Account Hijacking
Warwickshire Trading Standards has received reports of email hijacking where an individual’s email account is accessed by criminals and bogus emails sent out to email addresses in their address book.

The emails usually try to trick the recipients in to believing their friend or relative has sent the email themselves and is in some sort of trouble, for example being stuck abroad, as this bogus email does.

Just hoping this email reaches you well, I’m sorry for this emergency but I just have to let you know my present predicament. I made an urgent trip to Madrid, Spain. Everything was fine until I was attacked on my way back to the hotel, I wasn’t hurt but I lost my money, bank cards, mobile phone and my bag in the course of this attack. I immediately contacted my bank in order to block my cards and also made a report at the nearest police station. I’ve been to the embassy and they are helping me with my documentation so I can fly out but I’m urgently in need of some money to pay for my hotel bills and my flight ticket home, will PAY BACK as soon as I get back home.

Kindly let me know if you would be able to help me out so I can forward you the details required for a wire transfer. I will expect your response soon.

Never respond to unusual emails. Follow our advice:
<http://tinyurl.com/9ufbu7v>
17/09/2012 Car Clamping Banned on Private Land
From 1st October 2012, car clamping will be banned on private land.
Warwickshire County Council’s Trading Standards Service is hoping that the new law and appeals system that seek to regulate parking on private land will reduce the number of parking ticket and clamping complaints they receive each year.

From the 1st October 2012, the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 <http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2012/9/contents/enacted> will prohibit clamping and removal of vehicles parked on private land without lawful authority.

To find out more visit: <http://tinyurl.com/8z97oq9>
The email alert system is a quick, simple and cost effective means by which Warwickshire Trading Standards can alert interested individuals, community organisations, businesses, charities and others to the latest Trading Standards issues/scams etc.
18/09/2012 Boiler Cover Hard Sell
A Warwickshire consumer reported to the Trading Standards Service receiving an aggressive hard sell phone call from someone who had claimed her boiler cover had run out. This raised the householder’s suspicions immediately as she had never had boiler cover.

The caller then went to describe how costly a boiler breakdown would be and offered breakdown cover with discounts for over 50’s. Payments were to be made via PayPal on an amateur website.

Consumers are advised to carefully weigh up the cost and benefit of appliance breakdown cover and only buy from reputable businesses.

18/09/2012 Bogus ‘Sky Loyalty Team’ Call
A Milverton resident and NHW member reported to the Trading Standards Service receiving a telephone call from the ‘Sky TV Loyalty Team’ stating they were offering loyal customers special terms.

They asked for the householder’s full name to which he gave them false first and second names but used his own initials, to which they replied ‘thanks for confirming that’ and could he now supply his address? He said no and put the phone down. He then rang Sky to ask if they had such a programme as Loyalty and they confirmed that they did not and would look into it.

Rogue businesses who want to sign up unsuspecting Sky customers to over-priced and unnecessary extended warranty plans for Sky equipment often pretend they are calling from Sky.

18/09/2012 Further Microsoft Scams
Warwickshire Trading Standards are again warning consumers to beware of unexpected phone calls from fraudsters claiming to represent Microsoft.

Rugby and Southam residents paid £129 for anti-virus software that was actually free open source security software.
Microsoft do not make unsolicited calls to consumers. Never allow anyone you don’t know or trust to take control of your PC and download software on to it.

For more information on PC security, visit: www.getsafeonline.org.uk <http://www.getsafeonline.org.uk/>
18/09/2012 Business Crime Booklet Scam
Warwickshire businesses are warned to beware after some reported receiving a crime safety booklet containing an advert for their business and an invoice for £250.

Bogus invoices are often sent by rogue publishing companies who hope they will be paid without question.
For more information visit: <http://tinyurl.com/8rexdcr>

12/09/2012 Fake Debt Help Warning
The Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) is warning people to beware of bogus telephone calls from people claiming to be CAB debt advisers. The CAB will not make unsolicited telephone calls or txts. For more information visit: <http://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/index/aboutus/imposter_cab.htm>

12/09/2012 Bogus Letter Warning
A Wellesbourne resident reported to Warwickshire Trading Standards Service receiving a letter from someone who claimed the recipient was owed £12,500. The letter further stated that a response within 48 hours would enable the resident to receive a £1000 bonus. All the consumer had to do was to send a cheque for £14.95! Never send money in advance to receive a pay-out or prize. These unexpected letters, emails and phone calls are very likely to be bogus. For more information visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>

NHW N Beware of doorstep callers & pedlars following suspicious incidents across the county – help required

Please can we make you aware that over the last week or so there have been 26 reported suspicious incidents involving pedlars or door to door sellers.

These pedlars are occasionally also known as Nottingham Doorknockers and they have been busy at homes across Warwickshire in recent weeks.  A large quantity of them do in fact come from the Nottingham area. They are generally dropped off in an area in gangs and sell household items. Many now seem to confess to being ex-offenders, perhaps trying to astound and disarm you with their honesty!

The appearance of these doorstep sellers is believed to be possibly linked to burglaries and other incidents in the areas targetted.

These callers should always have a pedlars certificate with them and, if they do, most of the time, they are not committing a direct offence. However, if you buy items from these people you are likely to be obtaining low quality goods at an inflated price. A much worse outcome is they have a good look at your property with a view to coming back and committing a burglary.

Our advice is don’t buy from door to door salesmen.

Police are carrying out operations in several areas of the county and need your help to identify where these pedlars are operating.

If you see them in your area, or have one call at your home, please contact Police on 101 and report the incident.  Police will endeavour to attend the area and to speak to the callers and check that they have necessary Pedlars Certificates.

If you are harrassed or verbally abused by a caller then please call 999.

AUGUST 2012

Recent scam reported to Warwickshire Trading Standards Service
30/08/2012 Dating Scam
Warwickshire Trading Standards is warning residents to be careful when using dating websites after complaints that some are being used by criminal gangs operating in Africa and beyond.

The criminals give the appearance of genuine dating website users to develop relationships with potential victims. Email and messaging services are used and photos sent, but the gangs usually decline video calls to prevent their real identities being revealed.

After a period of time of the relationship developing, money is requested, usually small amounts to cover expenses for family medical care, general bills etc. It is often claimed this can be paid back when a larger inheritance or similar is gained. The criminals then ask for much larger amounts for fees and administration associated with the bogus inheritance.

Requests for money will continue to come until the victim realises they have been conned or their savings are spent.
For more information visit: www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams <http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/scams>
30/08/2012 PPI Claim Back Scam
Criminals are using payment protection insurance (PPI) refunds to steal money from consumers warn Warwickshire Trading Standards. The gangs phone or email residents at random, telling them they are entitled to thousands of pounds of PPI reclaims. The potential victims are told to send over £100 in Ukcash vouchers to receive their claim. The money is sent but the victims receive nothing in return.

Consumers are warned not to pay up front fees to anyone who claims they are owed PPI refunds.
Further, consumers who think they are entitled to PPI refunds should be aware that there is no need to pay any trader to reclaim them. Even legitimate no win no fee PPI reclaiming businesses will take a fee (as much as 30%) for carrying out this work.

For advice on claiming for free, visit:
www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/news/whats_new_apr12_payment_protection_insurance_-_claim_back_for_free.htm <http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/news/whats_new_apr12_payment_protection_insurance_-_claim_back_for_free.htm>

21/08/2012 Bogus BT Caller
A consumer alerted Warwickshire Trading Standards Service to an unexpected phone call from someone falsely claiming to represent BT. The bogus caller claimed to be able to save the consumer some money on his line rental but could not tell the consumer what plan he was currently on!

The call may have originated from outside the UK.
Fraudsters or high pressure sales people working for unscrupulous businesses often use the names of large companies to try to either get the consumer to agree to a contract they would not have otherwise chosen or simply to steal financial information.

Never give personal or financial information to unexpected callers!
To reduce the number of fraudulent calls you receive, visit: <http://tinyurl.com/bsn3gdj>
The email alert system is a quick, simple and cost effective means by which Warwickshire Trading Standards can alert interested individuals, community organisations, businesses, charities and others to the latest Trading Standards issues/scams etc.

14/08/2012 Offer to ‘Meet’ Fraudster Warning
Warwickshire Trading Standards is warning consumers to beware of an unusual ‘offer’ from a telephone cold caller.
A Warwickshire resident took a call from a man who claimed he worked for a national loft and cavity wall insulation fitter. The man, who called himself Alan, offered the consumer £5000 toward future work on the consumer’s property.

All the consumer had to do was to visit a local supermarket with £110 in cash and some ID and phone the caller from there. The consumer would then be paid £5000 in cash but would need to fill out some forms.

The caller gave the consumer what he claimed to be a London telephone number to call on. However, the number was in fact a Liverpool number.

Needless to say the consumer did not take up the ‘offer’!
It is not clear whether this was an elaborate attempt at a ‘hard sell’ of loft insulation or a straightforward fraud.
To reduce the number of fraudulent calls you receive, visit: <http://tinyurl.com/bsn3gdj>

Did you see or hear anything in Brinklow?

Offence: Theft of Motor Caravan
Location: Dun Cow Close, Brinklow
Further details: Report that between the below dates unknown offenders have taken FIAT BENIMOR MOTOR CARAVAN by unknown means.

Date: 04/08/2012 and 06/082012
Between:
Incident No: 20120806-0113

Did you see or hear anything in Brinklow?

Offence: Burglary Dwelling
Location: Lutterworth Road, Brinklow
Further details: Report that between the below times unknown persons have entered the property via smashing a side window and made a search through the property

Date: 06/08/2012
Between: 09:40 and 13:30
Incident No: 20120806-0136

JULY 2012

NHW RU Burglaries at homes in Rugby Road, Binley Woods and Queens Road, Bretford

Please be aware of the following incidents which have occurred at homes in your area over recent days:

Incident 234 of 18 July

At some point before 4.55pm on 16 July offenders forced their way into a home in Rugby Road, Binley Woods via the patio doors.  Once inside, the offenders carried out an untidy search before making off with several items.

Incident 190 of 27 July

At some point before 2pm on 27 July offenders broke a window at the front of acottage home in Queens Road, Bretford and then climbed into the dining room.

Once inside, the offenders stole a laptop computer, an IPod, and IPhone, a Wii games console along with several items of jewellery.

If you have information that you believe may be connected to either of these incidents please contact Police on 101 quoting the incident number given.  Please also remain on the alert and actively on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your homes or your area and report anything out of the ordinary or, of concern, to Police on 101.  Thankyou.

30/07/2012 Bank Scam
A Leamington householder reported receiving an unexpected call from someone claiming that she was owed £800 by her bank. The caller offered to visit the householder to give her the money on the doorstep!

It is unclear what the actual purpose of the visit would have been.
Warwickshire Trading Standards believe the caller might have been hoping to sign the consumer up to an agreement to reclaim miss-sold payment protection insurance (consumers can do this for themselves for free) or sell her goods or services. Distraction burglary cannot be ruled out.

30/07/2012 Card Scam
A Warwick consumer reported receiving an unexpected phone call from someone to say that an attempt had been made to use his bank/credit card to purchase goods. However, the consumer did not possess a credit/debit card described by the caller!

Warwickshire Trading Standards advise that banks will sometimes contact their customers if they believe that their credit/debit cards have been used fraudulently. However, consumers must ensure that the call is genuine. Never provide your complete card details to unexpected callers or your three digit security number – banks won’t ask for complete details in order to confirm your identity.

30/07/2012 Job Search Warning
Warwickshire Trading Standards advises job hunters to check that job offers are genuine after complaints from Warwickshire residents who applied, were interviewed and offered ‘IT posts’ and then asked immediately for up-front training cost fees. Job hunters need to ensure that job offers are real and not simply ways to sell training courses.

16/07/2012 Credit Card Scam Warning
A Rugby consumer may have been targeted by a credit card scam warn Warwickshire Trading Standards Service. The consumer received an unexpected telephone call from a trader regarding a transaction the consumer was meant to have made for £2000. The consumer said he was not aware of any transaction and the caller than asked for his name, address and credit card details. When questioned, the caller said an email he received had instructed him to phone the consumer but he would not reveal who he was and put the phone down when the consumer threatened to call the Police.

Never provide any personal or financial information to people you don’t know or trust. If you believe your credit card has been compromised, contact your cad provider on a publicly listed number.

16/07/2012 Health Survey Scam
A Stratford upon Avon resident reported to Warwickshire Trading Standards receiving an unexpected phone call from someone carrying out a ‘health survey’. The caller then advised a regime of tablets and asked for card details to pay £14.95. After the consumer had provided their details the caller said the full cost would be £90, (£14.95 for a single packet). The consumer became concerned but the caller responded ‘we have your credit card details’.

Under no circumstances should anyone provide their credit card details to unexpected callers. Providing your card details could allow callers to take any amount of money out of your account they wish – and continue to do so!

16/07/2012 Car Sale Cheque Scam
Warwickshire Trading Standards Service are warning car sellers to beware bogus buyers after one Warwickshire resident reported receiving two separate email enquiries from potential overseas buyers who wanted to pay for his vehicle by cheque. The cheques would not cover the whole amount to the cost of the vehicle, but claimed the buyers, the balance would be paid after the car was shipped! Had the sale gone ahead it is likely that the balance would never have been paid and the cheque itself may have been forged or stolen, meaning they any money paid into the sellers account would eventually be removed.

16/07/2012 Computer ‘Blows’ Up
Two Warwickshire residents have recently received bogus ‘computer fix’ calls with one Nuneaton householder reporting that they were told their computer was about to ‘blow up’.

Unexpected calls from people claiming your computer is infected with viruses, in need of repair or going to ‘blow’ up are scams. Warwickshire Trading Standards advise consumers not to give these callers access to their PC’s.

16/07/2012 Unwanted Calls Scam
A Leamington Spa consumer reported to Warwickshire Trading Standards that he had an unexpected phone call from someone claiming he had agreed to pay £49.90 to the trader to stop unwanted calls. The trader would not provide any details.

Signing up to the Telephone Preference Service is free, visit: www.tpsonline.org.uk <http://www.tpsonline.org.uk>

JUNE 2012

NHW RU Burglaries at homes in Courtleet Road & Coombe Drive, Binley Woods

Please be aware of the following incidents which have occurred at homes in your area over recent days

Incident 214 of 29 June

Between 9.20am and 1pm on 29 June offenders smashed a window at the rear of a home in Courtleet Road, Binley Woods and entered the house.

Once inside, the offenders stole a camera and items of jewellery.  The offenders also got into a shed in the garden and several other items were stolen.

Incident 367 of 3 July

Between 7 and 11pm on 3 July offenders attemted to get into a home in Coombe Drive, Binley Woods via the rear patio window and the kitchen window.  Both attempts failed but a plant pot and a glass from the kitchen windowsill were found in the garden.  Nothing appears to have been stolen.

Please remain alert, on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your own or neighbouring homes and please report anything unusual, or of concern, to Police on 101.  Thankyou.

NHW RU Burglary in Meadow Road, Wolston and theft from home in Main Street, Long Lawford

Please be aware of the following incidents which have occurred in your area over recent days.

Incident 47 of 26 June

During the night of 25 into 26 June offenders entered a home in Meadow Road, Wolston after forcing open a casement window.  Several items were stolen.

Incident 174 of 26 June

During the night of 24 into 25 June offenders stole two black metal hanging baskets from the front of a home in Main Street, Long Lawford.

NHW RU Burglaries at homes in Birchwood Road and Rugby Road, Binley Woods

Please be aware of two incidents which have occurred at homes in Binley Woods over recent days.

Incident 131 of 17 June

During the night of 16 into 17 June offenders smashed the rear kitchen window of a home in Birchwood Road, Binley Woods and entered the house.  Nothing is believed to have been stolen.

The offenders also made a search of the garage but the vehicle parked inside remained untouched.

Incident 172 of 16 June

Between 11 and 16 June offenders forced open a shed in the garden of a home in Rugby Road, Binley Woods and stole an Aldo chainsaw and a bright blue holdall.

MAY 2012

NHW RU Burglary at home in Heather Road, Binley Woods INC 326 of 9 May

Please be aware that at just before 10.30pm last night, 9 May, offenders removed a full pane of glass from the front bedroowm window of a home in Heather Road, Binley Woods.

The offenders were disturbed by the resident of the house and made off through the front door with a handbag and contents.

Please remain alert, on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your own or neighbouring homes and please report anything of concern to Police.  Thankyou.

APRIL 2012

NHW RU Inc in Speedway Lane, Brandon Heather Road, Binley Woods & School Street, Wolston

Please be aware of the following incidents which have occurred at homes in your area over recent days.

Incident 251 of 21 April

Between 10am and 4.30pm on 21 April offenders removed beading from windows at a home in Speedway Lane, Brandon in an attempt to get into the house.  When this failed, the offenders smashed a window, entered the house and stole a laptop computer, a tablet computer and a Nintendo Wii games console.

Incident 245 of 23 April

Between 2.30 and 3.45pm on 23 April offenders removed louvre glass spines from a window at a home in Heather Road, Binley Woods and then entered the house.  Once inside, the offenders stole a quantity of cash from a bedroom.

Incident 273 of 23 April

On the same date offenders smashed a window at another home in Heather Road and entered the house.  Several items were stolen.

A witness saw a silver Peugeot vehicle reverse onto the drive the previous evening and a male, described as around 20 with a stocky build and wearing a white tshirt walked to the front door of the house.  It is not known if this is connected.

Incident 4 of 24 April

Between 20 and 23 April offenders broke into a home in School Street, Wolston and stole a television and several other items.

Please remain alert, on the lookout for suspicious persons, vehicles or activity around your own or neighbouring homes and please report anything unusual or, of concern, to Police on 101.

MARCH 2012

NHW RU Distraction burglary at home of elderly lady in Woodlands Road, Binley Woods INC 234 of 31 March

Please be aware that between 2 and 4.30pm on 31 March three male offenders knocked at the door of an elderly lady in Woodlands Road, Binley Woods and offered to work on her guttering for a payment of £200.  The offenders applied sticky tape to the guttering and then approached the lady for payment.

The offenders followed the lady upstairs to bedrooms as she went to get cash to pay them.  The offenders were then disturbed by neighbours and made off.  Once they had gone it was discovered that additional cash had been stolen.

Please can we remind you to be very careful about answering the door to strangers who offer to do work for cash payment.  Do not allow anyone you do not know or are not expecting into your homes and always insist on checking their identification via telephone numbers from the phone book before allowing any work to be carried out.

If you have information that you believe may be connected to this burglary please contact Police on 101 quoting incident number 234 of 31 March.  Thankyou.

NHW NB & NW Increase in thefts of BMW vehicles, without keys, across the Midlands Region. Please check vehicles are locked

Please be aware that since January 2012, 154 BMW vehicles have been stolen from across the Midlands Region.  Thieves are targetting vehicles built between 2006 and 2011 and are stealing them without the keys, as in all cases the owners still have all the keys in their possession.

Thieves are targetting vehicles on driveways and in large carparks and wait for drivers to park and leave their vehicle.  Once the driver presses the key to lock the vehicle a frequency blocker intercepts the signal causing the vehicle to remain open.

The thief then enters the vehicle when the coast is clear and uses a device on the vehicle which programs a blank key.  The key is then used by the offender to drive the vehicle away.

If the frequency blocker is unsuccessful, the thief will often smash a front side window of the vehicle to get in.

Four of the vehicles have been stolen from addresses in Warwickshire but it may well be that the thieves are spreading their wings and Warwickshire residents will be targetted next.

Please could we advise all BMW owners to try their door handle after using their key to lock their vehicle, to double check that it is actually locked.

Please also have a good look around when leaving the vehicle to see if you can spot anyone waiting nearby or in a vehicle in the vicinity, especially if you check and find the door to still be open.

Please report anything suspicious to Police on 101 as they are very keen to catch these offenders.  Thankyou.

NHW NW Lookout for Grey VW Golf GTI Automatic FN56 TTY involved in burglaries in Exhall, Bulkington, Rugby & Southam

Please be aware that over the past few days the occupants of a Grey Volkswagen Golf GTI Auto vrm FN56TTY has been involved in burglaries at homes in Exhall, Bulkington, Rugby and Southam. The vehicle is believed to be on False Plates but this has not be confirmed at this time. Locating this vehicle is a Warwickshire Police priority and we need your help to find it.

If you spot the vehicle in your area please contact Police on 999 and report its whereabouts immediately so that the suspects can be arrested.

We believe the suspects are from Coventry and work is underway to identify them. Patrols have been increased in and around Exhall, Bulkington and the main arterial routes between Coventry and Rugby including Southam but this vehicle may pop up elsewhere so please be vigilant.

Advertisements

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s