In the present day, it is easy to assume that everyone is going digital. The benefits to companies and consumers of doing business online are evident, and there is a great selection of opportunities to get online and save time and money. Of course, while the emergence of the internet and online retail opportunities has helped people who operate within the confines of the law, it has also brought about benefits to people who act outside of the law.
There has been an abundance of new threats and risks to consumers from fraudsters who have been carrying out crimes and attacks on people online. This means that people need to be savvier in their online dealings. Thankfully the message about online crime is starting to get through and people are placing more focus and attention on this style of crime. However, it may be that this focusing on this style of crime has caused people to take their eye off more traditional frauds and criminal activities, which are still taking place.
There is a focus to remind People of Traditional Criminal activity
There has been a recent drive to remind people that phone scams are still prevalent and taking place all around the United Kingdom. This has been something that the Neighbourhood Watch (NHW) has been looking to impress on people and there have been close to 173,000 volunteers providing information about this style of crime. It is hoped that the message will be spread far and wide and the organisation aims to inform more than 2 million people of this style of crime. There is also a similar campaign being carried out by the Neighbourhood Watch Scotland organisation. Backing comes from the FFA UK, who have many members in the banking, credit and debit card sectors. There is also support from the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit, the DCPCU, which is a specialist department which focuses on tackling crime related to financial fraud and banking crime.
Katy Worobec is a director of FFA UK, and she said: “More and more people have heard about the dangers of phone scams and how they work, but unfortunately there is still a significant number who are unaware that highly professional criminals are systematically targeting members of the public to deceive them out of their savings. We want to declare this week a time for all those who are aware of these threats to talk to relatives and neighbours and warn them about suspect calls and how to protect themselves.”
There is a standard pattern for this Style of Crime
This style of crime is most commonly carried out by a fraudster calling the victim and then saying that they represent their bank. The usual spiel runs along the lines of the fact that fraudulent activity has been detected in their bank account and that there is a need to transfer money into a safe account. While this should sound suspicious it is easy to see why so many people can be caught off-guard by this sort of crime.
Jim Maddan is the Chair of the Neighbourhood and Home Watch Network in England and Wales and he took the time to speak to the media, saying; “Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinators are well-known and trusted within their communities and they are keen to be proactive in keeping people safe. They are ideally placed to provide advice to their neighbours, as well as vulnerable people within their neighbourhood, about how they can avoid phone scams.”
The Head of the DCPCU, DCI Perry Stokes, spoke about this sort of crime, saying; “Unfortunately, thousands of people have fallen victim to phone scams so before you even consider revealing personal information over the phone or making a financial investment with a cold caller, always consider if you really know who the person is. If the answer is no, don’t be a victim, just hang up the phone.”
While there is an increasing focus on online and digital fraud, traditional fraudulent activity is still alive and kicking. This means that individuals need to be aware of these crimes but there is also a need for defence solicitors to ensure that they remain in touch with traditional fraudulent activity which is still prevalent. While there is a great deal to be said for finding a law firm that moves with the times, there is a need to find a firm that can provide the right sort of support and representation for the crimes that people are suffering from.
Andrew Reilly is a freelance writer with a focus on news stories and consumer interest articles. He has been writing professionally for 9 years but has been writing for as long as he can care to remember. When Andrew isn’t sat behind a laptop or researching a story, he will be found watching a gig or a game of football.