– LCC Consumer Alerts – February 2021

Lancashire County Council

Cold Callers in Rural Wyre

Reports have been received of cold callers offering tarmacking work, knocking on doors in rural areas surrounding Garstang.  On two occasions, a small amount of work and price was agreed but the traders continued to carry out further work that had not been agreed, asking for payment in the thousands of pounds.  Family members and the police were made aware and the money did not change hands.

Roofers Cold Calling

Residents in the Chorley area are advised to be on their guard following an incident where cold-calling roofers claimed that work needed to be carried out on first the front roof, then the back roof, of a retired lady’s house.  A minor repair was carried out and over £1500 taken, with a further attempt to obtain another £1000.  

Remember, a trader should always give written cancellation rights where you agree to work being carried out in your own home.  In this case no paperwork, or trader name and address details were given, which makes tracing the perpetrators very difficult.

In another incident in the Chorley area a householder had seen roofers carrying out work on their street and approached them.  Initially £1300 for roofing repair work was agreed, but the job soon escalated, with the householder being quoted a price of £17,000 which was then decreased to £10,000.  The householder alerted the authorities and the work did not proceed. 

Use local, known, recommended traders and get 3 quotes before agreeing to any work, especially for larger jobs.  Do your research, and never feel pressured into making a hurried decision to agree to work.

Trading Standards advice is to always say no to cold callers.  The Safetrader scheme can help you find a trader in your area, contact 0303 333 1111 or go to www.safetrader.org.uk

Scam Call re National Insurance Number  

Reports have been received from worried residents throughout the county who have received an automated message on their mobile phone which states their National Insurance number has been compromised and to ‘press 1’ to be put through to the Fraud team. 

This is a scam,  the alleged fraud team would be likely to try to obtain bank account details or secure a payment.

Scam NHS Covid Vaccine Text

A fake text has been reported nationally telling people they are eligible to apply for the Covid 19 vaccine.  The text reads ‘we have identified that you are eligible to apply for your vaccine’ and takes you to a link which is an extremely convincing looking fake NHS website asking for personal details and bank details.

As with many scams, this scam preys on peoples vulnerabilities at what is a very stressful and difficult time. 

Scam DVLA Text

Beware a scam DVLA text claiming you are due a refund, the link in the mail takes you to a cloned DVLA site designed to steal your personal and banking detail.  If you get this don’t select the link or reply. Just delete or block if possible.

Scam Royal Mail Text

Beware a Royal Mail scam text asking for a shipping charge payment, this is a scam where the link takes you to a cloned Royal Mail site designed to steal your personal and banking detail.  If you get this don’t select the link or reply. Just delete or block if possible.

Scam TV Licence text

Fraudsters are sending out fake texts to BBC TV licence holders offering a Covid refund payment in an attempt to steal personal and financial information. The National Trading Standards Scams Team is warning people about a text sent to TV Licence holders  offering a Covid refund in an attempt to steal personal and financial information.  Again the text offers a link to a very convincing website where people are asked to put in their bank details to claim a refund. 

Scams can be reported to Action Fraud, contact 0300 123 2040 or go to www.actionfraud.police.uk

Contact the Trading Standards Service via the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133

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