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Telephone scams to be aware of!

South Gloucestershire Council Trading Standards - 15th July 2014

South Gloucestershire Trading Standards would like to remind residents to be wary of unsolicited calls, whether by telephone or at your door.

Trading Standards have been made aware of two possible telephone scams currently in practice. One scam involved an unsolicited telephone call, or cold call, offering the resident a service to block cold calls. The resident agreed to a quarterly charge which included a fee to register with Telephone Preference Service. However, the resident then found he was receiving many more cold calls. When he raised this with the company, they suggested he pay for an enhanced service. At this point the resident made a complaint to the Citizens Advice consumer helpline.

It is believed the company may have made these additional calls to convince the resident to part with more money by agreeing to an enhanced service. It is also worth noting that it is free to register with the Telephone Preference Service.

The second scam involved a cold call advising the resident that they had been sent a text message telling them of a big win. If they were to call another mobile telephone number from their landline, they would definitely receive their winnings. The concern here is that the number the resident is asked to call may be a premium rate number and the resident will incur high charges without knowing it.

Instances such as these highlight the need for people to be vigilant when they receive unsolicited telephone calls. If you receive such a call, be suspicious. Never give out your personal or financial details over the telephone unless you are certain with whom you are dealing with.

If you are at all in doubt, hang up!

If you feel you have fallen victim to such practices, or would like further advice, contact the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06.