Trading Standards Alerts

Telephone Preference Service scam

The Telephone Preference Service (TPS) is the official central opt out register on which you can record your preference not to receive unsolicited sales or marketing calls. It is a FREE service.

However, some fraudsters are cold calling Warwickshire residents claiming to represent the TPS and asking for bank card details. The fraudsters claim that the consumer’s card details on the TPS website have expired and need updating. But, the TPS is a free service and they do not take or hold credit or debit card information or ask for payment.

NEVER reveal personal or financial information to cold callers.

‘Free’ burglar alarm warning

Warwickshire residents are warned to beware of cold calls from traders offering to survey their property to install a ‘free’ burglar alarm. ‘Free’ security alarms may come with expensive ‘monitoring’ contracts that can cost consumers hundreds or thousands of pounds a year. In some cases the alarms may not even be suitable for the consumer’s property or personal needs.

Trading Standards advises consumers to seek advice from Warwickshire Police in the first instance.

Prize gift hid expensive subscription!

A Warwickshire consumer reported receiving an email to say that she had won a gift of skincare products. The consumer was asked to pay for postage and packing by debit card to receive the ‘prize’. However, further payments totalling almost £200 were then taken from her account.

Trading Standards advise consumers to be very wary if they asked to pay postage and packing to receive a free trial or a ‘prize’.

Never reveal personal or financial information to businesses you don’t know or trust.

Consumers who have experienced this problem should contact Warwickshire Trading Standards for help and advice on 0345 404 0506.

Bogus ‘Talk Talk’ cold call warning

Residents from across the County have reported receiving bogus phone calls from people claiming to be calling from Talk Talk.

One resident reported that a fraudulent caller told him he had a scam on his computer and a problem with his router. The caller quoted the resident’s Talk Talk account number and told him that £2000 would be placed in to his account. However, before this was to happen, the resident was asked to send £200 by money transfer to an address in Thailand!

Another resident received a similar phone call and gave the bogus Talk Talk fraudster access to her computer. She was then asked to set up an account with a money transfer service on-line, revealing her bank details to the fraudster!

Similar scam calls have also been made by fraudsters claiming to represent Apple and Microsoft!

Never reveal your personal or financial information to cold callers.

Beware scam websites selling high end TVs

By Simon Cripwell on Aug 24, 2015 12:11 pm

Warwickshire consumers are warned to beware of bogus websites selling high-end televisions. The fraudsters set up professional looking websites offering televisions for sale. They give false addresses and ask for bank transfers as the only acceptable form of payment.

Trading Standards are aware of consumers who have lost almost £500 after TVs they purchased never arrived.

All the bogus websites Trading Standards were aware of in relation to these incidents have already been shut down.

Buyers Advice

  • beware of traders offering goods that are considerably cheaper than those offered by other on-line traders.
  • beware of traders that will only accept bank transfers as acceptable forms of payment. If possible always use an escrow service such as PayPal (thus protecting your card details) and remember, if you pay by credit card for goods worth more than £100 and they don’t arrive, you can claim your money back from the credit card company under the Section 75 rules.
  • always Google the name of a trader you have never heard of before your buy, other customers may already have reviewed them.
  • businesses should give an address on their website. Why not look at the property on Google street view? Does the address look like a genuine business premise or is it a residential property? Perhaps it doesn’t exist at all?
  • bogus on-line traders may claim they have been operating their websites for years. However, you can find out when a .co.uk website was registered by searching it on Nominet

 

Council tax refund scam

A Leamington Spa resident reported  receiving an unexpected phone call from someone who claimed that if he paid £69.99 they would get him a refund on his Council Tax of £3,000!

Beware of cold calls and never reveal your personal or financial information!

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