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WEEKLY FRAUD UPDATE FROM WEST MERCIA POLICE - ECONOMIC CRIME UNIT - 05/12/2023



                                             FRAUD IS STILL ON THE INCREASE

Despite extensive coverage on national and local media showing the many methods used by criminals to defraud unsuspecting members of the public, the rise in reported cases of Fraud continue to increase. Nationally the losses incurred have increase year on year by 17% to £157 million.

Contacting potential victims by email purporting to come from official agencies is a common method of engaging with these victims. The messages can look convincing with the relevant logos pasted into the message and clickable links which, if used, can lead the unsuspecting person to financial losses.

There are two common scam emails circulating at the moment which claim to come from Government and NGA’s.

 

1. GOVERNMENT GATEWAY – This email carries the “GOV.UK” logo and tells the recipient there is “an important update regarding your account which requires your immediate attention”. “prompt action is needed” and there is a “READ NOW” clickable link.

So the criminal is creating a sense of urgency which in the heat of the moment may lead to the recipient giving away personal details or even access to their computer.

A quick check of the sender’s email address on the message will normally show this is a scam with the sender using a spurious address which bears no relation to any Government agency.

 

2. TV LICENCE – Once again the scammer had used the “TV Licencing” logo which may look authentic and created the sense of urgency by claiming your Direct Debit payment has an issue and your TV Licence will shortly be stopped. There will be grammatical and sometime spelling mistakes in the message and once again it will have come from a false and very obviously incorrect email address.  

As ever, do not be rushed into clicking any links in emails from unknown senders, report scam emails to report@phishing.gov.uk, and finally dispatch the email to your Spam box without opening any links

Please feel free to share these messages with any vulnerable friends, relatives or neighbours
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Take Five To Stop Fraud

STOP: Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe. 
CHALLENGE: Could it be fake? It’s OK to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you. 
PROTECT: Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud

ALWAYS REMEMBER:
• Avoid disclosing security details
• Emails, Phone Calls and Texts may not be authentic
• Always make direct contact with any organisation by using a genuine phone number 
• Stop and Challenge any unexpected requests
• Protect others by reporting Fraud and Scams
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If you’ve fallen for a scam, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or via actionfraud.police.uk

Scam Text messages can be forwarded to 7726 to help phone providers take early action and block numbers that generate spam on their networks.

Forward Fake Emails received to report@phishing.gov.uk

f you think your bank account or personal banking details have been used fraudulently, then use the short code number - 159 - to contact the Fraud Prevention Department of most major UK banks

 

 


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Message Sent By
Michael Barbour
(Police, PSV, Economic Crime Unit – Fraud Protect’ )

Neighbourhood Alert Cyber Essentials