Scam Alert info: Jane Friend, York BPSS
The busy shopping season approaching was an ideal time for OPTiC to empower people with the knowledge to avoid being scammed – something that has been around for a long time in some way, shape or form and can cause a huge amount of distress.
A speaker from Trading Standards gave a helpful and informative talk to 26 blind and partially sighted people on 9th December 2013 about how to recognise a scam and about our rights if we have been caught out.
He gave useful advice about doorstep scams, internet scams, telephone scams, mail scams and relationship scams. Frighteningly, almost everyone in the room had had some experience of scams of all these types, but we were advised that with a little knowledge we need never fall victim to a scam or pressured sale.
We were told what to look out for and who to contact for help. There were lots of questions and discussion about the talk and about personal experiences, and everyone reported that the talk had been very useful, helpful and reassuring. Everyone had a better understanding of the problem and how to avoid being caught out by scammers.
The following is helpful information for everyone:
- Trading Standards Service via Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline telephone 08454 04 05 06. or website www.adviceguide.org.uk
- Police. Non emergency telephone 101, Emergency 999
- Citizens Advice Bureau. website www.citizensadvice.org.uk
- Action Fraud. website www.actionfraud.police.uk telephone 0300 123 2040
- Age UK. www.ageuk.org telephone 0800 169 6565
- Get Safe Online website www.getsafeonline.org
- Mail and Telephone Preference Service http://www.mpsonline.org www.tps.online.org
- Phone Pay Plus website www.phonepayplus.org telephone 020 7940 7474
- Think Jessica website www.thinkjessica.com
- National Trading Standards E Crime www.tradingstandardsecrime.org.uk/