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Latest News

SCAM ALERT

Hm Revenue And Customs Scam

Northamptonshire Police are warning people once again of scammers contacting victims claiming to be from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) that trick people into paying bogus debts and taxes using gift cards.

  • Fraudsters are contacting the elderly and vulnerable claiming to be from HM Revenue & Customs.
  • Victims are being told they have arrest warrants, outstanding debtsor unpaid taxes in their name.
  • The fraudsters are asking victims to purchase gift cards as payment. There are a variety of methods being used including calls, texts and voicemails.

Victims are being contacted in a variety of methods by fraudsters claiming to be from HMRC and are being told they owe an outstanding debt. In most cases they ask for payment in gift cards. More »

Fraudsters like gift cards to collect money from victims because they can be easily redeemed and easily sold on. The scammers don't need the physical card to redeem the value and instead get victims to read out the serial code on the back over the phone.

Methods fraudsters use:

Spoofed calls: Fraudsters cold call victims using a spoofed number and convince them that they owe unpaid tax to HMRC.

Voicemails: Fraudsters leave victims automated voicemails saying that they owe HMRC unpaid taxes. When victims call back on the number provided, they are told that there is a warrant out in their name and if they don't pay, the police will arrest them

Text messages: They may also use text messages that ask victims to urgently call back on the number provided. When victims call back, they are told that there is a case being built against them for an outstanding debt and they must pay immediately.

One 87 year old victim recently told the BBC he was phoned by fraudsters who claimed to be from HMRC stating there was an arrest warrant out in his name. They told him it would be cancelled if he bought £500 in iTunes gift cards at Tesco.

The man bought the cards and gave them the serial numbers. But when they asked for a further £1,300 in vouchers, he became suspicious and hung up.

How to protect yourself:

  • HMRC will never use texts to tell you about a tax rebate or penalty or ever ask for payment in this way.
  • Telephone numbers and text messages can easily be spoofed. You should never trust the number you see on your telephones display.
  • If you receive a suspicious cold call, end it immediately.

To report a fraud please contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or www.actionfraud.police.uk

Message Sent By
Susan Fletcher (Police, Crime Prevention Officer, Northamptonshire)

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Posted: Mon, 28 Jan 2019 11:07 by Gill Wells

SCAM ALERT - PLEASE BE AWARE

Scam Letter Warning Dept Of Housing And Agriculture

Dear Residents

We have been advised of a letter doing the rounds in Northants and would like to raise your attention to it. The letter claims to be from the Department of Housing & Agriculture and is offering funding for alarms, CCTV and fire safety equipment for residents over the age of 55.

As well as being a bogus Government department, Bedfordshire Police can confirm that, no such funding is in existence and this looks to be a new version of the cold-call phone calls previously reported to us. Sending a letter in itself is not illegal and it gets round the law by getting YOU to invite a sales representative into your home where they then will apply hard-sell tactics with a view to you signing up for goods you don't really want at an extortionate price. More »

This is not acceptable behaviour and Bedfordshire Police are concerned that some people may find themselves in a situation they find difficult to get out of.

The below is the text from the letter;-

Dear Sir/Madam
As part of new security measures for 2019, we have allocated funding to the sum of £100,000 to assist the borough of Northamptonshire with safety equipment.
The funding will be distributed amongst UK residents within the postcodes to go towards equipment within the following areas:
- CCTV equipment
- Smoke alarms
- Fire extinguishers
- Home alarm systems
The funding will offset up to £150 per household providing you meet at least one of the following criteria:
- You or your partner are over the age of 55
- You or your partner have lived in the UK for over 5 years
You do not need to do anything at this time. An approved representative from HOME SOLUTIONS we are working in partnership with will visit you within the next 14 days to book your appointment.

Should you receive such a letter, please can you report it on 101. If you are contacted by a sales representative, please decline any offer of an appointment. After all, if you were not in the market for any of the above products before you received the letter, why would you be now?

However, if you are thinking about improving home security, please find an approved list of traders at the national Trading Standards websitewww.buywithconfidence.gov.uk and remember to get 3 quotes to compare prices.

Kind regards
Crime Reduction Team
Bedfordshire Police

Message Sent By
Lesley Johnson (Bedfordshire Police, Crime Reduction Officer, Community Safety Dept)

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Posted: Wed, 23 Jan 2019 11:47 by Gill Wells

HOUSING NEEDS ASSESSMENT - LARKFLEET HOMES

The survey you will have received from a firm of planning consultants Strategic Planning & Research Unit who have been retained by Larkfleet Homes has no connection to Hackleton Parish Council or our emerging Neighbourhood Development Plan.

As part of the Neighbourhood Plan, objective Housing Needs and Sites Assessments reports have been commissioned through Locality (the official government agency) and have been undertaken by independent planning consultants working for the Parish Council. These will be finalised very shortly. These reports will be based on the whole Parish area and not just Hackleton. More »

You will be consulted in due course; the findings and recommendations will be published locally and you will have the opportunity to respond. You will be able to read about this – and other aspects of the work towards the Neighbourhood Plan on the official website www.hpnp.org.uk. » Less

Posted: Mon, 07 Jan 2019 09:04 by Gill Wells