Breckland Council’s plea to speak out over scams

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A new national initiative designed to encourage people to help expose scams has been backed by Breckland Council.

The authority is supporting Scams Awareness Month, which is running throughout July, and is urging people to report scams in order to help others avoid falling victim to them.

The nationwide campaign has been launched by Citizens’ Advice, amid new figures which claim that less than five per cent of people who fall victim to a scam actually report it to the authorities.

And officials say residents should not be rushed into making a decision if they are offered an apparent service, or hushed if they do fall victim to the scammers.

Breckland council leader Michael Wassell said: “We’re urging people to lift the lid on scams and start talking about suspicious e-mail, junk mail, online ads or door-to-door sellers operating in their area.

“Scams are run by professional con artists and it can be very hard to know what to look out for.

“Our advice is that if an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

“If you’re contacted out of the blue be on your guard, and never give your bank details out unless you are certain you know who the person is, and that you can trust them.

“If you think you have been scammed, contact Citizens Advice for help and report it to Action Fraud.”

Officials say that any information given to the authorities about scams and their perpetrators can help them to gather intelligence about those responsible and how they target their victims.

Scams can be reported to the Citizens’ Advice consumer helpline on 0345 040506, or to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud office, by phoning 0300 1232040 or visiting www.actionfraud.org.uk.