There’s a scam for just about everyone and every situation. Booking a holiday? There’s a scam for you. Trying to find a job? There’s a scam for you. Shopping online? There’s lots of scams waiting for you. Sitting at home and minding your own business? Oh yes, there’s plenty of scams for you… through your letterbox, via your phoneand internet connection and sometimes delivered to your door.
The same channels that make our lives easier, the internet, smart phones, doorstep deliveries, also provide short cuts for scammers. Scams Awareness Month is about the fight-back against scammers. Giving consumers the information, skills and confidence to spot and stop scams.
One of the key challenges for organisations representing consumers is that so many people suffer scams in silence – just five per cent are reported. This is because people feel shame or embarrassment at being caught out. Or they put it down to experience, or recognise an attempted scam and consider it too obvious too succeed. But the real shame is that keeping silent denies consumers the opportunity to be more effective in combating scammers.
So, far from suffering in silence, we want consumers to shout out loud about scams.
May 2014 is Scams Awareness Month. It’s a great opportunity for consumers and campaigners to learn and share, then take that knowledge into the year round fight against scams. It’s only through spotting the signs of scams and spreading the word as wide as possible that consumers can help to stop scams.
You can download a handy checklist here with lots of advice on dealing with scams. Think Jessica is a great website with advice on how best to protect elderly and vulnerable people from postal and telephone scams.
If you think you have been the victim of a scam report it to Action Fraud 0300 123 2040 www.actionfraud.police.uk
For lots more top tips and resources, follow Uttlesford CAB on Twitter for a month of tweets in May to help you spot and stop scams! https://twitter.com/UttlesfordCAB