Warning on scams- Neighbourhood Watch and police tell residents to be on the alert

DEVIZES police and neighbourhood watch co-ordinators have warned local people of the numerous email and phone scams that are regularly being perpetrated.

Colin Whitehead, the co-ordinator of Urchfont’s Neighbourhood Watch scheme, has alerted his members to one scam that has been attempted in the village.

He said: “A lady in the parish recently received two emails. The first purported to be from Revenue and Customs, requesting personal details – including bank information – in order that she could be refunded a considerable amount of overpaid tax.

“It goes without saying this was a scam and, in fact, one that has been around for some time.

“However, the second email related to a penalty charge against a parking infringement “issued” by “CCTV Enforcement”. The charge could be paid online by clicking “Pay your PCN” box then entering the vehicle’s registration together with the number of the PCN.

“If you receive such a message, or some other variation on a theme, you should do no more than simply delete it.”

Wiltshire Police warn of a caller named Jonathan Richardson who claims to be a bailiff from Manchester.

People receiving this call were told they had incurred large cancellation fees in respect of non-payment of a standing order to a company called Business Directory. Unless they paid £1,200 by credit card, he said they would be served with a county court judgment the following day.

“Richardson” even left a phone number, 0800 555 750. This does not exist and his call was from a withheld number.

Inspector Matt Armstrong at Devizes police said: “If you get a call like this and something doesn’t ring true, call us and we can make the appropriate enquiries.

“I would rather have plenty of phone calls than have to conduct lengthy investigations after an offence has been committed and someone has been left as a victim.”

Ring the 101 non-emergency line to report any approach from a confidence trickster.

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