As thoughts of Christmas get closer, the public are being urged to remain vigilant for scams.
Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Alderman John Smyth, met recently with the Chair of the ScamwiseNI Partnership, Chief Superintendent Simon Walls, to discuss the work of the Partnership and the wide range of scams facing the public on a day-to-day basis.
Speaking following the meeting, Alderman Smyth said: “Scams take many different forms and guises and it is vital that the public are aware of the ways in which they can protect themselves from becoming a victim.
“From a letter to an email, or even a phone call, scammers will use any means to try and access your private or sensitive information. This is especially true as people prepare for key dates like Christmas and are keen to grab a bargain.
“The message is simple. If it seems too good to be true then it most probably is. Remain vigilant and, if you’re in doubt, check the ScamwiseNI Facebook page for the latest updates and ploys being used.”
Chief Superintendent Walls advised that the ScamwiseNI Partnership has recently launched an advice booklet, The Little Book of Big Scams.
He said: “This guide has been specifically designed to help the community protect themselves from fraudsters.
“In addition to detailing the types of scams being faced by the public, the publication gives valuable hints and tips on how to spot a scam and how to avoid becoming a victim of these crimes.
“The best way to recognise a scam is through awareness and I would encourage people to discuss them with friends and families and to report anything suspicious to the local police by calling 101.”
The ScamwiseNI Partnership exists to engage and inform the community about the risks of scams and the range of scams that exist.
The Partnership is mindful of the particular need to provide information to assist the more vulnerable in our society and highlight the number of scams to them using the SCAM Test:
Seems too good to be true
Contacted out of the blue
Asked for personal details
For further information in relation to scams please visit https://www.psni.police.uk/crime/fraud/scamwise-ni/
People can also follow ScamwiseNI on Facebook for daily updates @ScamwiseNI.