Police Connect Messages

The following is a Police Connect message.

Norfolk Police – Scheme to help victims of domestic abuse access help is rolled out across Norfolk

Scheme to help victims of domestic abuse access help is rolled out across Norfolk

Victims of domestic abuse are being urged to use the code ‘Ask Ani’ at a number of pharmacies across Norfolk by the police, the Police and Crime Commissioner’s office, councils and health organisations to enable them to get access to help.

The Ask for ANI (Action Needed Immediately) scheme was launched by the Home Office earlier this month to allow those suffering from abuse to discreetly signal they need help and support at a time where many victims are isolated at home with little opportunity to go out and access services.

The scheme has so far been adopted by all 2,300 Boots stores across the UK and includes stores across Norfolk (see full current list attached) and is growing in momentum with independent pharmacies signing up.

The Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Group in Norfolk (DASVG), which involves Norfolk Constabulary, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk (OPCCN), councils and health organisations, is encouraging anyone who may be struggling to access support during lockdown to Ask for Ani – pronounced Annie – at participating pharmacies.

Gavin Thompson, Chair of the DASVG, said: “Home should be a place where people feel the safest particularly in the current climate.

“However, we know the lockdown restrictions caused by the pandemic can be very difficult for those affected by domestic abuse.

“It is vital we do all we can to ensure those who need immediate help and support are able to access it in a way which doesn’t put them at further risk.

“We welcome the introduction of this scheme and hope as many pharmacies as possible across Norfolk will take part – we must do all we can to protect those for whom home is not a safe space.”

Andy Coller, head of safeguarding for Norfolk Constabulary and Vice-Chair of the DASVG, said that the police are prepared for the Ask Ani calls coming in through the pharmacy network.

He added: “Throughout the pandemic we have worked with partners to reach out to victims of domestic abuse and have promoted various ways to get in touch with support services. Ask Ani provides another opportunity for victims of this terrible crime to seek help.”

Participating pharmacies of the scheme, which went live on January 14, will be displaying Ask Ani posters in their windows. When someone uses the code words, a trained pharmacy worker will offer a private space where they can speak freely and contact the police or get access to support services or a domestic abuse helpline.

The Ask for ANI scheme is part of the national #YouAreNotAlone campaign, launched by the government, and supports local partnership campaigns, such as the See Something, Hear Something, Say Something initiative launched by partners in Norfolk, to help those affected by abuse to get help during lockdown. As part of the campaign the DASVG funded the roll out of 300,000 stickers for pharmacy prescription bags to signpost victims of abuse to help and support.

To find out more:

You can visit the Home Office website: www.GOV.UK/domestic-abuse.

For information on how to adopt the Ask for ANI scheme, go to: www.gov.uk/homeoffice/pharmacy-codeword-scheme.

Ask for ANI is available at Boots pharmacies across the county. Please visit the Boots website to find your nearest store.

 How to get help:
If you need to speak to someone about domestic abuse then please call 999 in an emergency or to make a report to police, call 101.
Norfolk and Suffolk Victim Care offer a 24hr support line for immediate emotional and practical support for all victims of crime. Call 0300 303 3706.
For more information on help numbers for organisations and charities that can offer tailored DA support visit the Norfolk Police , Norfolk County Council or OPCCN websites for more help.

This week’s Consumer scam alerts from Norfolk Trading Standards

The following is a Police Connect message.

 
 

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls claiming to be from ‘Amazon’ – 3 December 2020

We are again warning residents to be on their guard for telephone cold calls claiming to be from ‘Amazon’.

We have had several reports from Norfolk residents of recorded message calls claiming to be from Amazon that advise your Amazon Prime subscription ‘is about to renew at the cost of £39.99’. The call then states you can ‘press 1 to speak with someone’.

Where residents have interacted with the call, they have then been connected to a person who attempts to gather personal, account or financial details.

These calls are a scam and are not connected with Amazon in any way. If you receive this or a similar call our advice is do not interact with the call and hang up.

Amazon have put together some helpful tips on how to identify if a phone call is from them. This information can be found on the Amazon UK website.

If you have received a telephone cold call which you believe to be a scam you can report it to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Investment scams and fake cryptocurrency exchanges – 2 December 2020

We have received reports of Norfolk residents falling victim to online investment scams, including fake cryptocurrency exchanges.

Bitcoin is the most famous cryptocurrency, but there are more than 1,500 cryptocurrencies including other well-known ones such as Ethereum and Litecoin. Cryptocurrencies only exists online and are not controlled by a bank, treasury or country, meaning you can’t get physical notes or coins from the bank.

If you don’t understand a cryptocurrency or an investment, it is recommended that you avoid handing over any money.

A cryptocurrency scam can take many forms, this could include:

  • A fake cryptocurrency which doesn’t, or will never, exist
  • A bogus investment which promises to put money in a legitimate cryptocurrency
  • A dangerous website link that then downloads malware onto your computer

Which? Have put together useful guidance on how to spot an investment scam which can be found on the Which? website

The Financial Conduct Authority have also produced an interactive warning list where members of the public can check investment or pension opportunities that they have been offered and receive advice about current scams. This is available on the Financial Conduct Authority website.

If you think you have received an investment offer that you believe is a scam or you have become a victim of a scam, you can report this to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline.

Scam Alert – Text messages claiming to be from ‘Royal Mail’ – 1 December 2020

We are warning about text messages circulating claiming to be from Royal Mail.

A Norfolk resident has reported receiving the message pictured above which states, ‘we attempted to deliver your package’ and offering a link to ‘reschedule your package delivery’.

The link listed then goes to a fake version of the Royal Mail website which has been registered with one small difference which may be hard to spot

In this case the website has been registered as ‘royaimail’. Anyone accessing it is asked for a range of personal information supposedly to enable them to ‘reschedule the delivery’.

Our advice is always be wary of claims made in unexpected messages and never click on any links or open attachments contained within them.

You can see further examples of fake Royal Mail communication and how to report ones received to them on the Royal Mail website.

You can report suspicious text messages received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls offering cover for washing machines – 1 December 2020

We are warning Norfolk residents about telephone cold calls from an individual stating that your washing machine warranty has expired and needs extending.

The cold caller attempts to gather personal and financial details from the call recipient.

If you receive this or a similar call our advice is do not give or confirm any details and hang up.

If you want to check on warranty details of any goods within your home, contact the business where you purchased the item directly via their official website or phone number.

A recent article published by Which? gives further advice on receiving unwanted calls about appliance cover which can be found on the Which? website.

You can report suspicious telephone cold calls to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Information Alert – Don’t fall prey to loan sharks online – 30 November 2020

We are proud to support the Stop Loan Sharks Week Campaign #SharkFreeSurfing to raise awareness of the dangers of online loan sharks and help people access advice and support if they have fallen victim to this crime. If you have been a victim of illegal money lending, or are concerned about someone you know, please contact the Stop Loan Sharks 24-hour helpline on 0300 555 2222 or visit the Stop Loan Sharks website.

How to protect yourself from loan sharks online

  • Know who you’re dealing with. If you’ve only ever met someone online or are unsure of the legitimacy of a lender, take some time to do a bit more research. Check the lender is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). If not, don’t borrow from them and report to the Stop Loan Sharks team
  • Beware of loan adverts with no credit checks. Loan sharks have been known to advertise in community groups and on local selling pages. They may seem friendly and accommodating, but their behaviour can quickly change, and you might be harassed or threatened if you get behind with your repayments. Lenders must carry out credit checks to make sure borrowers can afford to pay back their loans. You should never hand over your bank details to strangers, even if they lure you with attractive offers. Remember, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is
  • Beware of any requests for your details or money. Loan sharks may ask for copies of your passport or pictures of your house, the street and your house number. Never send money or give card details, online account details or copies of personal documents to anyone you don’t know or trust

If you suspect someone may be a loan shark or they are acting inappropriately, you can report them anonymously to the Stop Loan Sharks website or by calling the Stop Loan Sharks Helpline on 0300 555 2222.

Alternatively, you can email the team [email protected] or access support via live chat on the website Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

The Stop Loan Sharks App is free to download on both iOS and Android devices from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

Op Randall (Rural Policing) Newsletter

Rural Policing Newsletter

Scam Alert

Please find below the Latest Consumer & Business Scam alerts from Norfolk Trading Standards.

Many thanks

PC Pete Davison
Community Engagement Officer – North Norfolk

 

Consumer Scam Alerts:

Information Alert – Covid-19 and Lockdown scams to be aware of – 05 November 2020

We are reminding residents to continue to be Scam Aware following the new restrictions in England from 05 November.

Action Fraud have put together a list of scams we should all be aware of regarding Covid-19 and lockdown. These include:

  • Fake Government emails offering grants and tax reductions
  • Emails offering to assist with universal credit applications
  • Fake track and trace emails claiming you have been in contact with someone who has Covid-19
  • Fake adverts for hand sanitizers and face masks
  • Fake emails offering 6 months of free TV License
  • Fake online dating profiles
  • Fake investment opportunities

More information on these scams and advice should you receive one can be found on the Action Fraud website

The Friends Against Scams partnership have also created a fact sheet to help raise awareness on coronavirus scams. Friends Against Scams help to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams. The fact sheet as well as information about becoming a Friend Against Scams and the free online awareness training available can be found on the Friends Against Scams website.

Scam Alert – Scam inheritance letter – 4 November 2020

A Norfolk resident has reported receiving a letter offering them the ‘opportunity’ to receive the inheritance from an estate. The letter claims that the estate comes from an ‘oil magnate’ who ‘tragically lost his life along with his immediate family during this coronavirus pandemic’.

The letter requests the recipient contacts the sender by email so that the funds can be released to them.

This letter is a scam and there is no inheritance to claim. It shows how scammers will continually update their approaches and will often tailor the story to reflect current new stories and events.

Easy ways to spot an inheritance scam letter include:

  • The amount of money on offer and the percentage claimed that is available to you will be extremely large
  • Letters / documents provided by the fraudsters are generally badly written with spelling mistakes and poor grammar
  • Look out for webmail addresses such as @Yahoo or @Hotmail. They are freely available making them easy to set up and equally easy to shut down
  • Fraudsters often claim that the person who has died was the victim of a well-publicised incident, such as plane crashes and natural disasters. To add credibility, they may even use the identity of someone who really did die in the incident.

If you receive this, or a similar letter, just recycle it after obliterating your details printed on the letter. Do not reply with personal details.

If you have received a letter which you believe to be a scam you can report it to us via our partners, the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Rogue Trader Alert – Doorstep cold callers offering ‘roofing work’ – 03 November 2020

We are warning residents to be on their guard following a cold calling incident in Norfolk this week involving roofing work.

The incident occurred in the Sheringham area and involved a man cold calling a local resident and offering to undertake repairs on their roof.

We always advise:

  • Never deal with cold callers looking to undertake work on or around your property
  • Never agree to have work done by somebody who is ‘just passing’ or take their word that it needs to be done at all
  • Never allow a cold caller access to your home, roof or garden even if they are offering to do tasks for a small fee or free
  • Never pay for work before it is completed
  • When looking to have work done on or around your property only deal with reputable companies you have researched and chosen yourself and have obtained a written quotation from before commencing the work

It is possible this doorstep cold caller could move on to other areas around Norfolk.

If you see cold callers operating in Norfolk contact us through the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Constabulary via 101.

If you feel intimidated or are concerned for vulnerable neighbours call 999.

Looking for a Trader you can Trust? Try a Norfolk Trusted Trader. To search our directory and read feedback from their customers visit www.norfolk.gov.uk/trustedtrader

Rogue Trader Alert – Cold calling incidents – 3 November 2020

We are warning residents to be on their guard after two cold calling incidents were reported in the Swaffham area this week.

In the first incident two men were reported cold calling at properties offering to undertake work on residents’ homes and gardens. They were seen to be using a yellow flatbed van.

In the second incident a young man cold called at a property claiming he was part of a ‘young offenders programme’ before showing the resident his passport as ID. He then attempted the sell the resident items from a bag he was carrying. Fortunately, the resident declined the offer and asked the cold caller to leave before reporting the incident.

Never deal with anyone who cold calls at your property offering to sell something or undertake work on your property.

It is possible these sellers will continue to move onto other locations in Norfolk.

If you see these cold callers in Norfolk, contact us through the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Constabulary via 101.

If you feel intimidated or sight these cold callers and are concerned for vulnerable neighbours call 999

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls claiming to be from HMRC – 28 October 2020

We are receiving reports from Norfolk residents about telephone cold calls claiming to be from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Recent reports have included an automated recorded message call informing the call recipient that ‘HMRC have issued a warrant for your arrest due to tax evasion’. These calls are appearing to come from a range of different ‘spoofed’ numbers.

More information about HMRC related phishing emails and bogus contact 

We always advise to be very wary of any approach made by a telephone cold call. If you receive this type of call our advice is DO NOT interact with the call and HANG UP immediately.

You can report suspected scam telephone calls to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Fake adverts for holiday accommodation – 27 October 2020

A Norfolk resident has reported losing £1165 to an online scam that advertised fake apartments to rent overseas.

The advert was posted on Craigslist by an individual who stated they were looking to rent out their apartment in Lisbon whilst they worked away. The individual asked the Norfolk resident to provide a copy of their passport before booking and sent the resident a link to process the payment. They stated this link would connect them to Airbnb and that someone from Airbnb would be in touch once the payment had been taken. However, after contacting Airbnb it became clear that this advert was not genuine, and that the resident had fallen victim to a scam.

Norfolk Trading Standards are advising Norfolk residents to be wary of fake adverts posted online and to stop and question whether it is genuine before parting with money or personal information.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) have a service which allows internet users to report scam ads appearing online.

Online users have been asked to fill in the form to report any fake ads they find on online platforms such as newspaper websites, paid-for search engines or social media.

The ASA will then make contact with the relevant platform who can then work to remove the advert and prevent the advertiser publishing further scam ads.

This reporting mechanism is in response to the ever-increasing number of fake advertisements found online which spread false information and trick internet users into parting with their cash and personal information.

If you think you have been the victim of an online scam you can report this to Trading Standards via our partners, the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133.

Information Alert – Home Repairs or Improvements? Make sure you #CHECK – 26 October 2020

We have received recent reports of residents losing money after arranging home improvement work on their property, with the trader not returning once they have been paid up front. Norfolk Trading Standards are therefore reminding consumers to think #CHECK when choosing a tradesman or business for the job.

Scam Alert – Online scammers selling pets – 22 October 2020

Criminals continue to take advantage of the demand for pets which is pushing the prices of puppies and kittens ever higher.

Earlier this year, 669 people lost a combined total of £282,686 in March and April, after putting down deposits for pets they have seen advertised online. The adverts that victims have responded to were posted on social media, general online selling platforms, specific pet selling platforms and websites.

The criminals posting these ads never have any animals to sell and will ask victims to put down a deposit for the pet to secure the purchase. They use the outbreak of COVID-19 and the current lockdown restrictions as a reason why the victim cannot come and see the animal first or pick it up. After the initial payment more and more funds will be requested to cover insurance, vaccinations and even delivery of the pet.

To help protect yourself from scams like this:

  • Do your research – before purchasing anything online, including pets, look up reviews for the site, or person, you are buying from. If you’re still not sure, ask a trusted friend or family member for their advice
  • Trust your instinct – if you can’t physically go to see the animal in person, ask for a video call. If the seller declines, challenge them on why. If you have any suspicions, don’t go ahead with the purchase
  • Choose your payment method wisely – If you decide to go ahead with the purchase, avoid paying by bank transfer as that offers you little protection if you become a victim of fraud. Instead, use a credit card or a payment service such as PayPal

Information Alert – Friends Against Scams – 21 October 2020

It’s been four years since Friends Against Scams launched with the aim of spreading awareness of scams and looking to equip as many people as possible with the knowledge to protect others.

Friends Against Scams is a National Trading Standards Scams Team initiative, which aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams by empowering people to take a stand against scams.

  • Scams cost the UK economy £5 – £10 billion a year
  • 53% of people over 65 have been targeted by scams
  • Only 5% of scams are reported
  • Statistics indicate that the average scam victim has lost over £3,000

Anybody can join Friends Against Scams and make a difference in their own way.

Every Friend Against Scams makes a difference – so what are you waiting for? Join in. Spread the word. Protect others.

Go to the Friends Against Scams website to complete their free online training session.

Scam Alert – Emails claiming to be offering large cash sums – 20 October 2020

We frequently receive reports about emails circulating claiming to be from people looking to share, move or donate large cash sums.

These emails will often contain the names of genuine people, either connected to large companies, or people who died in accidents or disasters reported in the news.

Of course, there is no money. Email offers a free way to spam out these messages to tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of recipients at the press of a button. The scammers that send these emails are only looking for one or two people who respond to try and exploit for personal and financial information and then money in the form of ‘fees’ as part of the process of transferring the alleged money.

Action Fraud offer the following advice regarding this type of email and how to protect yourself:

  • Don’t respond to any email like this. Delete it straight away
  • Ask yourself ‘why me?’. This person doesn’t know you and has no reason to trust you with such a large amount of money
  • Never travel anywhere if offered, even if it isn’t far to go. You won’t get any money and you’re putting yourself in danger

You can report suspicious emails received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls claiming to be from ‘Amazon’ – 19 October 2020

We are continuing to warn residents to be on their guard for telephone cold calls claiming to be from ‘Amazon’.

In recent weeks we have received a number of reports from residents who are receiving cold calls claiming to be from Amazon. Examples of these calls include:

  • Recorded message calls claiming ‘your Amazon Prime subscription is about to expire, and a payment of £79 will be automatically taken’ the call then states you can ‘press 1 to cancel the payment’
  • Recorded message calls claiming your Amazon account ‘is about to be cancelled unless you update your bank details’. The call then states you can ‘press 1 to speak to customer service’
  • Recorded message calls making similar claims but referencing ‘Amazon Prime Video subscriptions’

Some residents have reported receiving multiple calls within a day delivering the same message but originating from different numbers.

In previous reports, where residents have interacted with recorded message calls, they have then been connected to a person who attempts to gather personal, account or financial details.

These calls are a scam and are not connected with Amazon in any way. If you receive this or a similar call our advice is do not interact with the call, do not give or confirm any information and hang up.

If you have received a telephone cold call which you believe to be a scam you can report it to us via our partners, the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on their freephone number 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Emails claiming to be from ‘DVLA’ – 16 October 2020

We are warning about emails circulating claiming to be from DVLA.

One recent example reported by a Norfolk resident claimed that ‘Your bank has declined twice the latest Direct Debit payment’ and ‘If you will not Update your Information, your vehicle is no longer taxed’ The email goes on to provide a link to ‘Check Vehicle Status Now’.

This email is not from the DVLA and any links contained within the message are likely to go to a genuine looking fake version of the DVLA website which will attempt to gather personal and financial details.

Our advice is always be wary of claims made in unexpected email approaches and never click on links or open attachments if approached in this way.

DVLA offer the following advice to stay safe online with contacting the DVLA or if you receive something claiming to be from the DVLA:

  • Only use GOV.UK. When looking for information or using our online services, double check that you are using a GOV.UK webpage so that you can be sure that you’re dealing directly with DVLA
  • Scam emails: We never send emails that ask you to confirm your personal details or payment information. If you get anything like this, do not open any links and delete the email immediately
  • Beware of misleading websites. Keep an eye out for potentially misleading third-party websites. These sites will often offer to help you apply for a driving licence or tax your car but are likely to charge additional fees for services that you could get for free or at a lower cost on GOV.UK
  • Look out for premium rate numbers. Look out for websites offering to connect you to our contact centre, as they are usually premium rate numbers. Our contact centre numbers will only ever begin with 0300 – which costs the same as a local call
  • Be mindful of what you share online. Never share images online of your driving licence and vehicle documents. This personal information could be invaluable to those looking to steal the identity of a vehicle or its owner
  • Texts: We never send texts about vehicle tax refunds. Text scams often ask you to follow a link to provide credit card details. Never click on the link and delete the text straight away

You can report suspicious emails received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

 

Business Scam Alerts:

Scam Alert – Business advertising cold calls and invoices – 3 November 2020

Businesses need to watch out for telephone cold calls about payment for advertising.

A Norfolk business received a call claiming they owed payment for ‘advertising artwork’ which was to be published in a ‘UK business guide’. Despite the business owner stating they knew nothing about the advertising they requested copies of the alleged correspondence. Following this the business was sent a copy of the invoice, a copy of the artwork and the front cover from the guide magazine.

The businesses then received a further call from the same cold caller again requesting payment. When they questioned the authenticity of the demand for payment and asked for further evidence of the contract the cold caller became verbally aggressive.

If you receive this type of call or an invoice demanding payment for unknown services, our advice is do not to make any payment unless you have agreed to the advertising and to check any demand for payments carefully.

Where agreements have been made and the business feels they have been misled over the terms of the advertising and they require further advice, please contact us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls offering ‘advertisement opportunities’ to businesses – 30 October 2020

We have received a report from a business regarding a telephone cold call from a male claiming to be from the ‘Norfolk Fire Service’.

The man asked if the business would be interested in advertising with the emergency service for a fee of £90. The business rejected this but received a later phone call offering the service for £80 which was also rejected. This phone call is a scam and similar calls may be attempted on further businesses in Norfolk. We would remind all businesses that Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service do not cold call businesses or authorise third party companies to do so on their behalf looking to sell advertising or sponsorship.

We always advise to be wary of telephone cold calls and the claims made during them. Businesses can take the following steps to protect themselves against scam calls:

  • Be on your guard for payment requests that are unexpected or irregular, whatever the amount involved
  • Always check the person or organisation calling is genuine. If you receive a suspicious call do not give or confirm any personal or financial details. If the caller is claiming to be from a known organisation you should ask to call them back, hang up, wait five minutes and then contact them using a known contact number or the details displayed on their official website.
  • If in any doubt, do not make the payment, however urgent it may seem or whatever the suggested outcome(s).

You can report suspicious communication, which could be a scam, received by your business to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133.

Rogue Trader Alert – Cold callers targeting businesses – 15 October 2020

We are reminding businesses to be on their guard for cold callers who visit them attempting to sell services, items or offering to undertake work.

We have previously issued warning when callers have been operating in Norfolk. These have included cold callers who are:

  • Offering to lay tarmac or gravel, or replace car park markings. They often claim the material is ‘left over from another job’.
  • Selling items like generators, power tools and pressure washers
  • Offering to service or sharpen items in use by the business
  • Selling products to staff, often claiming to be ex-offenders selling as part of a rehabilitation scheme

Never deal with cold callers who arrive at your business offering to sell items or undertake work.

If you business is visited by a cold caller, report the incident to us through the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Police on 101.  Give as much detail as possible, including:

  • A description of the cold caller
  • Why they said they were calling
  • Who they said they were representing
  • Whether they were alone or working with others
  • Whether they called at neighbouring businesses after leaving your premises
  • If they returned to a vehicle, was it sign written?  Did you see the make, model, colour or registration plate?

If you have CCTV at your premises, did it capture any images of the cold callers?

HM Courts & Tribunal Service SCAM

The Police have issued this scam alert

Appeal for information

The following is a Police Connect message.

 Can you help us reunite a WW 2 veteran with his treasured Kings Royal Rifle Corps’ beret? His coat and beret were stolen from The Crown Hotel in Mundford on Saturday eve. Do you know anything that may help our investigation? Call us on 101 & quote incident number 311 of 30/8/20.

T

Rogue Trader Alert – Cold Calling Incidents – 23 June 2020

Good Morning,

Please find below the Latest Consumer & Scam alerts from Norfolk Trading Standards.
Regards PC Pete Davison
North Norfolk Community Engagement Officer

We are warning residents to be on their guard after a number of cold calling incident have been reported in the Norfolk area.

A resident in Poringland received a phone call offering servicing and cleaning of their solar panels. The caller arranged to visit the property the next day and requested access to the resident’s roof space in order to inspect their inverter. The resident was informed that they required a new inverter and warranty for £1500. The resident refused and the trader left.

The second incident occurred in Hellesdon and involved an individual offering gardening work. The cold caller has reportedly visited several areas of Hellesdon in the last few days, has cold called at a number of properties and approached residents outside their properties. The male is described in some reports as ‘persistent’ and ‘verbally aggressive’ when his offer of work is turned down. He has been seen to be using a red van and charging high prices for work.

The area of Diss has seen several incidents of two males cold calling residents’ homes offering roof insulation. The males show ID badges which do not have photo identification and state they are working in relation to a Government funded scheme. The males request access to the loft space and have been seen to take photos of properties. The males are driving a black BMW with blacked out windows.

In Felthorpe a male has cold called a local resident offering central heating installation in relation to a government grant. The male requested access to the resident’s property in order to inspect their radiators which was declined.

In Briston a resident has reported a smartly dressed male aged between 25-30 who called at their property offering advice to business owners on available grants.

We always advise:

  • NEVER deal with cold callers looking to undertake work on or around your property
  • NEVER agree to have work done by somebody who is ‘just passing’ or take their word that it needs to be done at all
  • NEVER allow a cold caller access to your home, roof or gardens even if they are offering to do tasks for a small fee or free
  • NEVER pay for work before it is completed
  • When looking to have work done on or around your property ONLY deal with reputable companies you have researched and chosen yourself and have obtained a written quotation from before commencing the work

It is possible these doorstep cold callers could move on to other areas around Norfolk.

Anyone sighting these cold callers in Norfolk please contact us through our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Constabulary via 101.

If you feel intimidated or sight these cold callers and are concerned for vulnerable neighbours call 999.

Rogue Trader Alert – Doorstep Cold Callers selling gravel – 23 June 2020

We are warning residents to be on their guard after receiving two reports of cold callers offering gravel for sale in Norfolk.

The first report is from a Tittleshall resident who was cold called by a male offering a gravel for sale from his truck. The resident declined this, however later received an invoice through their door with bank account details to make payment for the value of £575.

The second report is from a Wormegay resident who has also received a cold call from a male selling gravel.

We always advise:

  • NEVER deal with cold callers looking to undertake work on or around your property
  • NEVER agree to have work done by somebody who is ‘just passing’ or take their word that it needs to be done at all
  • NEVER allow a cold caller access to your home, roof or gardens even if they are offering to do tasks for a small fee or free
  • NEVER pay for work before it is completed
  • When looking to have work done on or around your property ONLY deal with reputable companies you have researched and chosen yourself and have obtained a written quotation from before commencing the work

It is possible these doorstep cold callers could move on to other areas around Norfolk.

Anyone sighting these cold callers in Norfolk please contact us through our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Constabulary via 101.

If you feel intimidated or sight these cold callers and are concerned for vulnerable neighbours call 999.

Information Alert – Home Repairs or Improvements? Make sure you #CHECK – 22 June 2020

If the warm weather has got you thinking about sorting out the garden or arranging home improvement work, Norfolk Trading Standards are reminding consumers to think #CHECK when choosing a tradesman or business for the job.

Scam Alert – Phone call claiming to be insurance company – 21 June 2020

We have received a report of a Norfolk resident being cold called by a female claiming to be calling from their ‘boiler insurance company’. The caller used the residents name and stated they were offering a reduction in price for customers over 60.

The caller asked the resident for personal information, including date of birth and bank account details. When the resident refused to provide this information and ended the call, they then received a second call from a male stating to be a manager from the same company.

These calls are not genuine and are likely to be used to gain valuable personal information. If you receive a call from someone you pay on a regular basis, but cannot confirm that it is a genuine contact, hang up and contact the organisation on a number printed on official correspondence such as a recent bill, their website or app.

You can report suspicious telephone cold calls to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls from ‘Mastercard’ and ‘Visa’ claiming that ‘you are required to authorise a payment’ – 19 June 2020

We are receiving reports about telephone cold calls delivering a recorded message claiming to be from Mastercard and Visa. The incoming number displays the Norwich area code of 01603. The message states that you are ‘required to authorise a payment’ and then gives the instruction to ‘press 1 to authorise a payment of £600 for an order placed 15 minutes ago’.

These calls are not genuine and are likely to be used to seek remote access to computers, gather personal, account or financial details.

If you receive one of these calls do not press any keys if prompted and hang up.

You can report telephone cold calls received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Rogue Trader Alert – Doorstep cold callers claiming to be from organisations or charities – 18 June 2020

We are reminding residents to be on their guard against doorstep cold callers, even if they claim to be from well-known organisations or charities.

Recently the ongoing COVID-19 situation has led to reports of doorstep cold callers claiming to be offering help to vulnerable residents or calling for health-related reasons.

We are continuing to ask residents to report all doorstep cold calling incidents to us, especially if their property is displaying a No Cold Calling door sticker of any type. We are also offering the following advice:

  • If someone cold calls at your property remember it is your doorstep so your decision whether you even answer the door, if you can check through a spy hole or look from a window to see who is there
  • Think about your home security, make sure other doors to your property are locked before answering the front door
  • If the person is offering services or trying to sell, something politely but confidently say you are not interested and close the door
  • If the person is claiming to represent an authority, organisation or charity, ask to see ID. If ID is offered, ask if you can take it to check its validity. If you are given the ID, close the door and contact the company or organisation on the ID by a number you find online or in the phone book, Do not use information on the ID, it could be fake. If no ID is offered, the caller refuses to let you check it, or you cannot verify it is genuine, politely but confidently say you are not interested and close the door
  • As the cold caller leaves, if you can, safely from inside your property watch and see:
    • Do they go to call at neighbouring properties
    • Do they return to a vehicle, is it sign-written, can you see the make, model, colour and registration plate
    • Are they alone or working with others
    • Note down a description of the cold caller, why they were calling and who they say they were representing – all of this information is very useful to us and the police when looking at cold calling incidents

You can report doorstep cold calling incidents to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133 or to Norfolk Constabulary on 101. In an emergency always dial 999.

If you would like one of our No Cold Calling door stickers call the Norfolk County Council customer service centre on 0344 800 8020.

Why not consider setting up a No Cold Calling Zone in your community? You can find out more about our scheme at www.norfolk.gov.uk/nccz

Scam Alert – Emails claiming to be from ‘British Gas’ – 16 June 2020

We are warning about emails claiming to be from British Gas which are circulating again.

One recent example, which included the recipient’s email address within the greeting, claimed that ‘we sent you a gas bill for £21.21 and we still haven’t received payment’ before going on to detail a range of charges which could be made along with a link to ‘Pay us online now’.

These emails are not from British Gas and any links contained within the message are likely to go to a genuine-looking fake version of the British Gas website which will attempt to gather personal and financial details. There are likely to be several versions of this email in circulation quoting different amounts.

If you are concerned for the status of an online account log in to it only using a web address from a bill or statement which you have entered into your web browser or using a genuine app. Never use links in unexpected emails.

You can report suspicious emails received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Text messages claiming to be from ‘DVLA’ – 15 June 2020

We are warning about text messages circulating claiming to be from ‘DVLA’ stating ‘After annual calculations’ you are owed an amount from ‘overpayments’. The text goes on to offer a link to ‘claim your refund’.

These text messages are fake. DVLA do not send text messages or emails about vehicle tax refunds. It is also likely that there will be a several versions of this message circulating quoting different amounts.

If you receive this or a similar text message delete it without clicking on any links.

If you have received a text message which you believe to be a scam you can report it to us via our partners, the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Rogue Trader Alert – Doorstep cold callers offering ‘roofing work’ – 15 June 2020

We are warning residents to be on their guard following a cold calling incident in Norfolk this week involving roofing work.

The incident occurred in the Wisbech area and involved a man cold calling a local resident and stating that their guttering and flat roof needed repairs.

Having accessed the flat roof, the cold caller then claimed that additional work was needed on the flat roof including ‘specialist materials’. He then persuaded the resident to hand over a large amount of money for these materials and left the property.

We advise:

  • Never deal with cold callers looking to do work on or around your property
  • Never agree to have work done by somebody who is ‘just passing’ or take their word that it needs to be done at all
  • Never allow a cold caller access to your home, roof or gardens even if they are offering to do tasks for a small fee or free
  • Never pay for work before it is completed
  • When looking to have work done on or around your property, only deal with reputable companies you have researched and chosen yourself and have obtained a written quotation from before commencing the work

It is possible this doorstep cold caller could move on to other areas around Norfolk.

If you see cold callers operating in Norfolk please contact us through our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Constabulary via 101. If you feel intimidated or are concerned for vulnerable neighbours call 999.

Cold Calling Alert – Doorstep cold callers offering ‘driveway work’ – 12 June 2020

We are warning residents to be on their guard after received reports of doorstep cold callers in the Hellesdon area offering driveways services.

Our advice is to never deal with anyone who cold calls at your property offering to do work on or around your property. It is possible these cold callers could move on to other areas within Norfolk.

Anyone concerned about doorstep cold calling activity in Norfolk can contact us through our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133.

Looking for a Trader you can Trust? Try a Norfolk Trusted Trader. To search our directory and read feedback from their customers visit www.norfolk.gov.uk/trustedtrader

Could your community help stop doorstep cold callers from targeting vulnerable people by becoming a No Cold Calling Zone? To find out more about the scheme or to apply visit www.norfolk.gov.uk/nccz

Internet Provider, COVID Testing and DVLA warnings – SCAM Alert

Latest Consumer & Scam alerts from Norfolk Trading Standards

Inbox
x

Police Connect [email protected]

Fri, 12 Jun, 15:46 (2 days ago)

to me

 

The following is a Police Connect message.
 

Good Afternoon,

Please find below the latest Consumer & scam alerts from Norfolk Trading Standards.

Kind regards

PC Pete Davison
Community Engagement Officer – North Norfolk

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls claiming ‘your internet service will be terminated’ – 11 June 2020

We are again receiving reports about telephone cold calls delivering a recorded message claiming to be from ‘your Internet service provider’ stating that ‘your internet service will be terminated within 24 hours’. It then gives the instruction to ‘press 1 to speak to a service manager’.

These calls are not genuine and are likely to be used to seek remote access to computers, gather personal, account or financial details or attempt to take ‘missed’ payments.

If you receive one of these calls do not press any keys if prompted and hang up.

You can report telephone cold calls received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133

Scam Alert – Emails claiming to be from ‘DVLA’ – 10 June 2020

We are warning about emails circulating claiming to be from DVLA.

Recent examples have included emails claiming that ‘your payment has failed’ and that you need to ‘Pay your vehicle tax to avoid unpleasant consequences’.

These emails are not from the DVLA and any links contained within the message are likely to go to a genuine-looking fake version of the DVLA website which will attempt to gather personal and financial details.

Our advice is always be wary of claims made in unexpected email approaches and never click on links or open attachments if approached in this way.

DVLA offer the following advice to stay safe online with contacting the DVLA or if you receive something claiming to be from the DVLA:

  • Only use GOV.UK
    • When looking for information or using our online services, double check that you are using a GOV.UK webpage so that you can be sure that you’re dealing directly with DVLA
  • Scam emails
    • We never send emails that ask you to confirm your personal details or payment information. If you get anything like this, do not open any links and delete the email immediately
  • Beware of misleading websites
    • Keep an eye out for potentially misleading third-party websites. These sites will often offer to help you apply for a driving licence or tax your car but are likely to charge additional fees for services that you could get for free or at a lower cost on GOV.UK
  • Look out for premium rate numbers
    • Look out for websites offering to connect you to our contact centre, as they are usually premium rate numbers. Our contact centre numbers will only ever begin with 0300 – which costs the same as a local call
  • Be mindful of what you share online
    • Never share images online of your driving licence and vehicle documents. This personal information could be invaluable to those looking to steal the identity of a vehicle or its owner
  • Texts
    • We never send texts about vehicle tax refunds. Text scams often ask you to follow a link to provide credit card details. Never click on the link and delete the text straight away

You can report suspicious emails received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Emails claiming to be from ‘BT’ – 10 June 2020

We are warning that emails claiming to be from BT continue to circulate.

Recent examples have included emails claiming that ‘Your monthly payment was recently declined’ and another saying ‘payment information for your account has been declined.

These emails are not from BT and any links contained within these messages are likely to go to a genuine-looking fake version of the BT website which will attempt to gather personal and financial details.

BT offer customers the following advice about suspicious emails claiming to be from BT:

If you’re worried about an email that appears to be from BT, rather than clicking on any links you should type ‘www.bt.com/mybt’ in your browser to log in to your My BT account.

  • From here you can check your account details are up to date and view your bill
  • Alternatively use our automated phone service to check your balance – 0800 443 311
  • Forward the email to our dedicated mailbox –‘[email protected]’ and delete the email

You can report suspicious emails received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Cold Calling Alert – Doorstep cold callers enquiring about ‘insulation’– 9 June 2020

We are warning residents to be on their guard after receiving reports of doorstep cold callers in the Happisburgh area.

In the incident, a resident received a doorstep cold call from two men who claimed they were calling as part of a ‘government scheme’ which could ‘offer funding for insulation’.

We advise to be very wary of claims made by doorstep cold callers and never give access to your property, agree to services, buy items or for return visits if approached in this manner.

Anyone concerned about doorstep cold calling in Norfolk can contact us through our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline via their online reporting form or by telephone on 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Test and trace scams – 8 June 2020

We are continuing to receive reports of online test and trace scams.

Please remember, genuine texts, calls or emails from the NHS service won’t ask you for any personal details upfront.

You’ll be given a unique ID number to log into the NHS Test and Trace website. The only official web address for the NHS Test and Trace service can be accessed via the following link: https://contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk/

Here is an example of a recent phone call scam where the recipient is noted as ‘X’. Thankfully in this case the recipient who received it realised it was a scam and hung up:

Caller: Good morning. I am calling from the NHS Track and Trace Service. According to our system you are likely to have been in close proximity to someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 test.

X: Ok, can you tell me who that person was?

Caller: I am not able to do that. That is confidential information.

X: Right …So?

Caller: But you do need to be tested within the next 72 hours. So, can I get the best mailing address so that we can send a kit to you?

X: Ok (gives address).

Caller: Thank you. I just need to take a payment card so that we can finalise this and send the kit to you.

X: Sorry, a payment card? I thought this was all free?

Caller: No, I am afraid not. There is a one-off payment of £500 for the kit and the test results. Could you read off the long card number for me, please, when you are ready?

X: No, that’s not right. This is part of the NHS so there is no charge.

Caller: I am afraid there is. Can you give me the card number please, this is very important and there are penalties for not complying.

X: (puts the phone down)

Testing through the NHS is free.

If you receive this or a similar phone call it is a scam our advice is do not give or confirm any information and hang up.

Stay scam aware and report any suspicious approaches to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

To find out more about the NHS test and trace service visit the GOV.UK website.

To manage your contact details, additional information and subscriptions, please login through the member portal.

Police Connect – Scam Alerts

 
Please find below the latest Consumer & scam alerts from Norfolk Trading Standards.
Kind regards
PC Pete Davison
North Norfolk Community Engagement Officer

Scam Alert – Social Media messages claiming to be from ‘Dominos’ offering ‘2 Large Pizza for Free’ – 26 May 2020

Be aware of social media messages claiming to be from Dominos offering ‘2 Large Pizza for Free’. It’s a scam.

Scammers are continuing to use the coronavirus pandemic to spam people with claims that these offers are ‘supporting the Nation’ during this time.

If you get a message like this, do not interact with it in any way and do not like or share on your social media profile.

Scam Alert – Facebook Messenger asking to borrow money – 22 May 2020

We are warning Facebook users to be aware of messages from existing Facebook friends sent via the Messenger service which asks to borrow money.

The message will give a reason why the money is needed ‘urgently’ and will be followed by further messages pressuring the recipient into sending the money.

These messages come from a Facebook friend’s account but are actually sent by fraudsters who have hacked the friend’s Facebook account and taken control of it.

If you receive this or a similar message via Messenger, do not interact with the message and contact the friend via another route if possible. Advise them their Facebook profile may have been compromised.

Find out more about keeping your Facebook account secure, including activating login alerts and two-factor authorisation.

Scam Alert – Further examples of scam text messages claiming to be from PayPal – 28 May 2020

With more people ordering items online, we are warning residents about scam text messages claiming to be from PayPal.

A recent example says that ‘you have (1) important unread message’. The message then provides a link to ‘view & resolve the current issue with your account’.

These text messages are not genuine and are not connected with PayPal.

If you receive this or a similar text message, delete it without clicking on any links.

If you are concerned about the security of an online account, contact the provider directly via their genuine website or app.

Never use links or details provided in a text message.

You can report suspected text message scams to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

News Alert – Norfolk Against Scams Partnership launch anti-scamming campaign during Covid-19 – 21 May 2020

Agencies from across Norfolk have come together to warn residents to be extra vigilant of new and existing scams during the Covid-19 pandemic. A three-week campaign is being headed up by the Norfolk Against Scams Partnership, with a membership comprising Norfolk County Council’s Trading Standards, Norfolk Constabulary, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCCN), voluntary agencies, businesses and residents.

There will be a different focus on partners’ social media platforms each week, using the hashtag #NorfolkScamAware:

  • Trusted information – to guide the public to useful information and support agencies.
  • Protect – to give advice on how people can better equip themselves to identify the signs of scamming.
  • Watch Out – to make victims aware of the Norfolk Scam Prevention Service and the new scams that have emerged due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

If you’re on Facebook or Twitter search for the hashtag #NorfolkScamAware and share some of the information with your family, friends, neighbours and in the community where you live.

Scam Alert – Emails claiming to be from ‘TV Licensing’ – 20 May 2020

There continues to be a range of emails circulating claiming to be from TV Licencing.

Recent examples have included emails claiming to be a ‘COVID19 Personalized Offer’ stating you are eligible for ‘1 x 6 months of free TVLicence’.

These emails are not from TV Licencing and any links contained within the message are likely to go to a genuine-looking fake version of the TV Licencing website which will attempt to gather personal and financial details.

Our advice is always be wary of claims made in unexpected email approaches and never click on links or open attachments if approached in this way.

TV Licensing offer the following advice to help spot scam TV Licence emails:

  • Check the sender’s email address – TV Licensing will only send emails from [email protected] (or [email protected]uk)
  • Check how scammers address you – genuine TV Licensing emails will always use your title and last name. Scammers may simply use your email address, say ‘Dear Customer’ or nothing at all
  • Check links in the email – do not click on links or attachments. If you’re unsure, you can inspect links first. On a computer, hover over the link with your mouse (but don’t click it). On a mobile or tablet, press down and hold (don’t release while on the link)
  • Check addresses of any websites it takes you to – scammers can’t use ‘www.tvlicensing.co.uk’ for copy-cat sites. They’ll try to disguise this so carefully inspect the full address in the browser bar

You can report suspicious emails received to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Information Alert – EasyJet Cyber Incident – 19 May 2020

EasyJet has confirmed that it had suffered a cyber-attack and is in the process of contacting affected customers following the incident.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has issued the following advice for EasyJet customers:

  • Anyone who thinks they have been a victim of online crime can report a cyber incident using Action Fraud’s online fraud reporting tool anytime of the day or night or call 0300 123 2040. For further information visit www.actionfraud.police.uk
  • If you’re an EasyJet customer, we recommend changing your password on your EasyJet account – and if you know you’ve used that password anywhere else, change it there too. The best way to make your password long and strong is by using a sequence of three random words you’ll remember

There is more information on the NCSC website:

  • Now would also be a good time to check if your account has appeared in any other public data breaches. Visit haveibeenpwned.com, enter your email address and go from there
  • Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a free security feature that gives you an extra layer of protection online and can stop cyber criminals getting into your accounts – even if they have your password. If it is available, then we suggest using it on all your important accounts
  • If your account has been compromised, your personal details may be used to help craft more convincing scam emails. If you believe you have received a suspicious email then you can report it to the NCSC using the Suspicious Email Reporting Service (SERS) but the NCSC has produced advice which will help you spot the most obvious signs of scam emails
  • EasyJet confirmed that 2,208 credit card details were accessed in this incident. If you were one of them, you should be notified of this by EasyJet. We advise that you monitor your accounts for any unusual activity and if you’re worried, get in touch with your bank’s fraud department. There is more information on the NCSC website

Scam Alert – Further reports of telephone cold callers claiming to be police officers – 19 May 2020

We have received a further report of a Norfolk resident receiving a telephone cold call claiming to be from a police officer.

In this incident, the male cold caller claimed to be a police officer from the ‘Met Police’ and stated he was calling about the resident’s bank card which ‘had been breached’.

During the call the male also mentioned ‘the Serious Fraud Office’ and ‘the Flying Squad’ as being involved. He then said the resident should ‘call 999 immediately’ to ‘verify his information’.

Courier fraud happens when a fraudster contacts a victim by telephone claiming to be a police officer, bank or from a government department, among other agencies. Several techniques will then be adopted in order to convince the victim to hand over their bank details or cash, which may then be passed on to a courier.

Residents are reminded that neither your bank nor the police will never ask you to withdraw money or purchase items.

If you receive this or a similar call do not follow the instructions given. Instead:

  • Hang Up
  • Either wait five minutes for your phone line to clear, use a mobile phone or a different phone line; and
  • Call and report to Norfolk Police via 101

In an emergency always call 999.

Please continue to share these warnings and advice with family, friends and anyone within your community who could be vulnerable to this type of approach.

Scam Alert – Text messages regarding ‘Cervical Screening’ – 18 May 2020

We are again highlighting a warning after some women reported being contacted by text message, with the sender claiming to be from the ‘call and recall service’ to advise that ‘they are overdue for screening’.

The message then states you need to call a mobile number and provide personal details.

These messages are not from the NHS Cervical Screening Programme. If you receive this message do not respond or call the number.

Contact when it is time to book your cervical screening appointment will be sent by post. This letter will tell you where you can go for cervical screening and how to book.

Speak to your GP surgery if you have questions about cervical screening invitations, results or any symptoms you have.

You can report suspicious text messages to us via our partners the Citizens Advice consumer service on freephone 0808 223 1133.

Scam Alert – Telephone cold calls claiming to be from ‘Amazon’ – 18 May 2020

We are again warning residents to be on their guard for telephone cold calls claiming to be from ‘Amazon’.

This follows a report from a Norfolk resident who received a call which delivered a recorded message stating, ‘this is Amazon’. The message then went on to say that ‘your Amazon Prime is about to be renewed and a payment of £79.99 will be taken from your bank account’. The call then claimed that you could ‘Press 1 to speak to an Amazon Service Manager to discontinue this’.

These calls are a scam and are not connected with Amazon in any way. If you receive this or a similar call our advice is do not interact with the call and hang up.

If you have received a telephone cold call which you believe to be a scam you can report it to us via our partners, the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on freephone 0808 223 1133.

To manage your contact details, additional information and subscriptions, please login through the member portal.

Norfolk Police thanks people for following government guidelines over Easter

orfolk Police is thanking communities who followed Government guidelines and stayed at home over Easter.

While the majority of people listened to the advice to stay at home and stay away from others, and not travel to tourist spots, coastal retreats, parks and public areas, there were people who chose to ignore the social distancing guidelines.

Over the four-day Easter Bank Holiday weekend, Norfolk Police received 1,261 calls from members of the public reporting people ignoring the guidelines.

On Good Friday (10 April 2020), the constabulary received 353 calls from members of the public reporting people ignoring the guidelines, and a further 452 calls on Saturday, 11 April 2020.

122 warnings were given to those in public or gathered at other addresses on Good Friday (10 April) and a further 230 warnings issued the following day (Saturday 11 April).

On Easter Sunday (12 April), the constabulary received 304 calls from members of the public reporting people ignoring the guidelines, and a further 152 calls on Easter Monday (13 April).

145 warnings were given to those in public or gathered at other addresses on Easter Sunday (12 April) and 39 warnings were given yesterday (Easter Monday 13 April).

Assistant Chief Constable Julie Wvendth, said: “This Bank Holiday Easter weekend was unlike anything we’ve experienced before with the public asked to keep away from beauty spots and avoid socialising in person. For many people that will have involved cancelling their plans and not spending time with friends and family. I know this will have been difficult and I want to thank people for complying with the government’s guidelines

“Our best chance of stopping the spread of infection is to follow the government advice, stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives. Social distancing is only effective if we all work together and follow the same advice, and I know people are making real sacrifices in order to do that.

“Over Easter we received a number of calls regarding breaches of these restrictions and, in line with our policing approach, we will always aim to engage, explain and encourage before taking any enforcement action. However, if left with no other option, officers will use the new powers available to them.”

A man from Norwich has been sentenced to 16 weeks in prison after assaulting a police officer and breaching the Covid-19 restrictions on Easter Sunday (12 April 2020).

It follows an incident when an officer in the Roads and Armed Policing Team, who was on patrol in the city, came across a group of approximately 10 people congregating in a park off Pitt Street in Norwich at around 11.35am on Easter Sunday.

The officer stopped to speak to members of the group; the majority of whom left the park when requested. However, one member of the group, a 44-year-old man, initially refused to provide his details to the officer, continued to be obstructive and coughed in the officer’s face four times. He was also in breach of existing bail conditions. He was arrested and taken to Wymondham Police Investigation Centre for questioning.

Richard Law, age 44, of Northumberland Street, Norwich, was subsequently charged with assaulting a police officer. He was also charged with engaging in a social gathering of approximately 10 people and being obstructive when asked to leave by police contrary to regulations under the Health Protection Regulations 2020.

He appeared at Norwich Magistrates’ Court yesterday (13 April 2020) via video link and received a 16-week custodial sentence.