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Ringmaster message for Sefton residents from Merseyside Police and Home Watch.

 Bogus Callers ~ 20/08/12

 In the past, residents have been warned about Bogus callers who visit houses and try and gain entry to your property.

They come in many guises, as officials, people wanting to do work on your path or garden, salesmen, collecting for charities or just after a long conversation to put you at ease, they may ask for money.

 Many people who call are genuine but the odd one is not and these are ones we have to be aware of, to protect ourselves and our property. We have suggested in our messages to put the chain on before opening the door , checking the identity of the caller and if in doubt keep them out.


But what about callers on the phone?

 A Home Watch member in Southport answered the phone on Monday 13th August and a very polite gentleman told her he was Phillip calling from Sefton Council. He asked her if her house was rented or was she the owner.

A few days earlier she had received a letter from Sefton Council so she assumed it would be concerning the letter. The caller went on to say that he wanted to give her prior notice that he would be calling at her property on the following Monday afternoon, because he needed to enter her premises to check on the pipe work in her house.

 She started to ask him questions about which pipes he was referring to as she had the blue pipes and he put the phone down.


This lady used exactly the correct procedure. She contacted Sefton Council and United Utilities to see if they were arranging visits.

They made enquiries and phoned her back to say that the phone call had not come from them.

She had phoned 1471 to check on the callers telephone number to find that the number was with held.


What happened in Southport could happen again somewhere else in Sefton.

Please be prepared and double check before you let a stranger in your house.   


Sefton Home Watch Margaret Jepson 0151 777 3419







Offenders have been calling at properties in some areas of Sefton posing as Waterboard officials. They are telling the householders they need to come into their house to check to see if the water in the taps is running a blue colour.


This is a method these people are using to gain access to homes. To protect yourself and your home from bogus callers it is suggested you take the following precautions.


LOCK: Keep your front and back doors locked, even when you are at home.


STOP: Before you answer, stop and think if you are expecting anyone. Check that you have locked any back doors and taken the key out. Look through the spyhole or a window to see who it is.


CHAIN: If you decide to open the door, PUT THE CHAIN or BAR ON FIRST. Keep the bar or chain on while talking to the person on the doorstep. (Normally, when the door is shut and locked, leave the bar or chain off in case of an emergency.


CHECK: If someone who looks official calls at your door, always do the following:

* Ask for and carefully check their identity card, even if it they have a prearranged appointment (all genuine callers will carry one).

* Do they look like the person on the card?

* If you have received a letter about the visit is the name the same as that on the letter?

* If you are not expecting them and they have not shown an identity card, do not let them in until you have double-checked that the caller is genuine.


If, after these checks, you have any doubts about the caller, especially if they came unannounced, tell them to call back later when someone can be with you. You can also check by phoning the firm they belong to. Look up the number in the phone book and check it against the card the caller has given you. Do not be tempted just to ring the number on the card as it may be a fake.


If in doubt KEEP THEM OUT.   


Home Watch Margaret Jepson tel: 0151 777 3419    email:




    Mimicking Microsoft ~ 2012  (& 2010)

Residents in Sefton are being warned of a potential computer scam designed to con consumers out of money.


Trading Standards officers in Sefton have been alerted to the scam by a number of worried residents who received unsolicited telephone calls from someone claiming to be from Microsoft.


The caller asked the consumer if they were having problems with their PC, and if they were, he then asked them to follow his instructions by pressing a series of keys on their computer.


This then enabled the caller to gain control of the consumer's PC who later said the reason for the problems with the computer were due to the expiry of a Microsoft Licence.


The caller then advised them that they would need to pay more than £80 to renew the licence and were then asked to fill out a form in order to provide bank details.


Thankfully the consumers ended the call at this point and they did not part with any money. Trading Standards officers in Sefton are warning others to do the same if they are contacted.


Sefton Council Trading Standards manager, Andrew Naisbitt, said:

"In situations similar to this, please do not part with your bank details via the telephone.


"If you are suspicious of the caller, do not follow their instructions and press keys to allow them to access your PC.


"Always alert neighbours and friends of this scam to prevent them from becoming a victim of crime.


"If you are having problems with your PC, for peace of mind, always contact a reputable trader."


For help and advice on all consumer issues call Consumer Direct on 08454 040 506.




Christmas & the annual out-of-date 'PDS' Royal Mail Scam email


First featured on this website in 2007

The more recent email warnings about a 'PDS' Royal Mail parcel-phone scam are only 1/3 correct

~ It did occur, but only in December 2005 & the company, originating from Belize were stopped and fined £10,000.


There were no parcels but the automated answer machine message, which lasted for 6 minutes, cost £1.50 / minute.

~ the current emails say you will be charged £315 immediately, which is impossible!

See or also: is the organisation that regulates phone-paid services in the UK (formerly ICSTIS)


Postal scam chain email 2011 – PhonepayPlus’ statement

19 October 2011

Statement from PhonepayPlus about the chain email about an alleged postal scam which is being circulated on the internet.

PhonepayPlus, the UK premium rate telephone services regulator, is aware that a chain email about an alleged postal scam is being circulated on the internet. The email refers to the Royal Mail, Trading Standards and ICSTIS (PhonepayPlus' former name).

PhonepayPlus appreciates that recipients of the email may want to find out more information about the alleged scam and has therefore issued the following statement:


Below is a recent example sent to HomeWatch by a wary member in October 2011 ...


"Can you circulate this around especially as Xmas is fast approaching - it has been confirmed by Royal Mail.

The Trading Standards Office are making people aware of the following scam:

A card is posted through your door from a company called PDS (Parcel Delivery Service) suggesting that they were unable to deliver a parcel and that you need to contact the m on 0906 6611911 (a Premium rate number).

DO NOT call this number, as this is a mail scam originating from Belize .

If you call the number and you start to hear a recorded message you will already have been billed £315 for the phone call.

If you do receive a card with these details, then please contact Royal Mail Fraud on 020 7239 6655."

or your local trading standards office.



Press release from Trading Standards:

 Don't Get Burnt By Doorstep Traders


 Trading Standards officers in Sefton are backing an Office of Fair Trading (OFT) campaign warning elderly residents about rogue doorstep traders.

 The campaign has been launched in July tying in with the increase in doorstep selling during the summer months.

 It urges people to be cautious and remember it is 'your doorstep, your decision' and not to accept building and maintenance repair offers from cold callers.   

The campaign targets people over the age of 70, especially women, asking them to be aware of the risks of rogue doorstep traders and have the confidence to refuse on the spot house repairs and not to hand over money. 

Sefton Council Trading Standards manager, Andrew Naisbitt, said:

"British summer weather is notoriously unpredictable so when the sun does shine we all want enjoy our homes and gardens.

 "We want to support people in Sefton to become more aware of the risks of doorstep sellers and the tricks they use to get you to agree to house repairs. 

 "While it is not illegal for handymen to canvas for work in this manner, rogue doorstep trading is an ongoing problem. 

 "Decisions made on the doorstep may result in you agreeing to work or a service that isn't necessary, of a poor standard, much more expensive than quoted or not done at all - leaving you out of pocket and often in need of more expense to set the problem right. 

 "This campaign wants to highlight this issue and ensure that homeowners take the time to consider their decisions carefully, with the support of family and friends."

 According to advice service Consumer Direct, more than 5,000 complaints were received last year about uninvited home maintenance traders, with the most common complaints being about roofing, tarmacing and insulation. 

 Sefton Council also operates an approved trader scheme and if residents want to use a reputable trader they can visit

 For help and advice on doorstep selling contact Consumer Direct on 08454 040 506 or visit




email "Phishing" Attempt ~ Sent to HomeWatch on 15th June '11

1st ~ HomeWatch does not use webmaster@maghull... for it's PayPal account

2nd ~ PayPal always use your registered name not "dear valued PayPal customer"

3rd ~ No PayPal logo or business address (Luxembourg)

4th ~ PayPal use in this country

5th ~ clicking here link has web address of = not a PayPal web address




2 March 2011 

Britons caught out by booby-trapped web ads

The website of the London Stock Exchange was one that displayed the booby-trapped ads


Tens of thousands of people could have been caught out by cyber criminals who put booby-trapped adverts on popular webpages.

The criminals racked up the victims by compromising the computers used by ad firm Unanimis to display adverts to popular websites.

The ads appeared on the websites of the London Stock Exchange, Autotrader, the Vue cinema chain and six other sites.

Unanimis said it moved quickly to pull the adverts once they were discovered.

Victim count

It said it was now investigating how the criminals managed to inject their booby-trapped ads into its feed.

David Nelson, operations and IT director at Unanimis, told the BBC that security alerts revealed the existence of the booby-trapped adverts at 1800 GMT on 27 February.

Clearing out the adverts took about three hours, said Mr Nelson.

A preliminary investigation revealed that "unauthorised access" to the ad servers allowed the criminals to inject their malicious code.

Mr Nelson said Unanimis was still investigating how the criminals got access as the firm has security systems in place that check adverts are safe before they are distributed.

"The [adverts] they chose to modify were not being widely distributed," said Mr Nelson. This, coupled with the attack taking place on a Sunday evening, limited how many people fell victim.

"We have to count ourselves lucky in some respects," he said.

The infection kicked off warnings from a fake security program

The bad ads exploited vulnerabilities in software used on Windows PCs to make it look like a machine had been hit by a virus.

Then it displayed a bogus diagnostic screen telling users that their PC was infected. It asked for payment to remove the "infection".


23 February 2011 

Cyber criminals find new targets on unsuspecting sites

Visiting reputable websites can still result in malware being downloaded on to users' computers


The proportion of websites secretly harbouring malware has reached one in 3,000 according to security firm Kaspersky.

It found a surge in the number of web-based attacks in 2010, with more than 580 million incidents detected.

Risk was no longer focused on sites with illegal content, such as pirate films and music, the report said.

Instead, criminals were increasingly using legitimate websites, such as shopping and online gaming.

The malware writers target vulnerable web servers, with owners often unaware of the attack, said Ram Herkanaidu, senior security research at Kaspersky Lab.

"They will put a piece of Java code, for example, onto a website and scramble it so it is hard to notice.

"The Java code runs when you visit the site and redirects the user to malware," he said.


Dodgy websites

"Previously you could avoid these attacks by not visiting dodgy websites.

"Today the malware writers are targeting legitimate ones," added Mr Herkanaidu.

Kaspersky's figures are based on reports from customers who have joined its security network.

The rise in incidents of web-based attacks far outstripped the number of new members in 2010, indicating the increasing threat, said Mr Herkanaidu.

"It has become the cyber crooks' attack of choice," he said.

The threat from cyber crime is being taken increasingly seriously by government officials.

Last week, the UK government published figures estimating that cyber crime costs the economy £27 billion a year.

Earlier this month, European Union researchers said almost a third of computer users had been infected by malware in the past year.




Telephone-to-PC PHISHING again

I received a phone call today (15th Sept 2010) from a man who claimed to be from a Microsoft Certified company's Software Maintenance Department (company name not even offered)

He claimed this was a free service offered as a way of a reward for Microsoft users!!!

He stated that my Microsoft computer software had one or more serious faults which I didn't know about but needed urgent attention.  He asked me to go online and that he would tell me what to do.

I obviously knew he was not genuine and that it was a CON so kept him on the phone to gather details before eventually telling him that I WAS a computer engineer and KNEW I didn't have any problems.

During our chat I questioned the male caller and he told me they wanted to connect to my computer remotel
y (from where he was in India) and would  be sending a piece of their software (obviously malware) which would then identify any 'problems' I might have so a technician could help me for a still undisclosed fee! 

He complained that I was asking too many questions and had wasted his time; I reminded him that he called me uninvited ~ he rung off (1471 revealed a withheld number)

If you provide them with an Internet connection they will infect your PC with problematic software which will cause pop-up warnings of faults which were not there previously and con you out of a fee to fix it.

Once again may we remind you to be wary of people trying to scare you into paying for something you don't need. Do not give any personal details over the phone or in this case about your computer unless you KNOW who is on the other end of the line.


I also received a call on my mobile today from someone alledging to be from Vodaphone (I am with Vodaphone). They asked for my postcode and D.O.B. by way of security to confirm who I was? ... I offered to give the middle figures if they could tell me the first & last digits ... they then asked for the first 2 digits of my security code instead and then they would tell me the details they had asked for ... I did, they could and so it was Vodaphone    :o)

the moral is; genuine callers on the phone or at the door understand about people's very realistic fear of bogus callers, identity theft and phishing hence are happy to answer security questions.



Telephone PHISHING

I received a phone call on Bank Holiday Monday from a man who claimed to be from the TPS ~ Telephone Preference Service; although the overseas male called it
Telephone Protection Service.

(see our "useful websites" page or go direct to

When I told him I was already registered with them, he claimed my account had expired and his call was proof of that, yet he did not know my first name!

He wanted "
just £19 for a lifetime subscription which would stop ALL unwanted telemarketing calls and all I had to do was give him my credit card details, then clever software would keep watch over my BT phone line and stop all of these calls" (I have a Virgin phone line)

I kept him on for as long as possible trying to get more information about how it worked (he did not know) until I told him that I knew he was not genuine; as the TPS is an unlimited FREE service ~ he actually asked me why I was wasting HIS time? Then he just hung up.

'1471' showed his phone number was withheld.

Neither BT nor Virgin can currently trace these calls; so no one can stop them!

Once again may we remind you to be wary of giving any personal details over the phone.



Sent: 30 March 2010 11:54
Subject: Ringmaster message for Sefton residents from Sefton Crime Prevention Office and Home Watch.


Merseyside Police in Sefton is re-inforcing the message 'If in doubt keep them out', following a spate of burglaries involving people posing as officials, or using other excuses to gain access to people's homes.

Over the last few weeks, there have been a number of incidents in the Sefton area.

Just after 6pm on Wednesday, 17th March a man knocked on the door of an elderly lady who lives on Sandbrook Road in Ainsdale. The man claimed he was the brother of a neighbour and asked to wait in her house until the neighbour returned. He was let into the property. After he left the woman realised that cash had been taken.

The next day, Thursday, 18th March,at about 7.30pm a man knocked on the door of an elderly lady who lives on Abbey Gardens in Birkdale. The man pretended to know the woman's neighbour and asked if he could wait in the house until they got home. He was allowed in. When he left the woman realised her
purse had been stolen.

Sergeant Susan Simmons, of
Merseyside Police, said:" This type of crime is despicable; victims of distraction burglary can suffer terribly both emotionally and physically. This type of crime can seriously affect their trust and faith in people afterwards.

"It is vital people remember to check the identity of any stranger who calls at their home, genuine callers will not mind waiting. Help and support is available from the police, local authorities, and utility companies so please make sure you use it. Anyone with information about these or any other incidents are asked to contact us immediately."

Many people who call at your door are genuine but some are not. Therefore it is vital to take precautions when people call at your home.

Police are urging residents to contact them if they think a bogus caller has deceived them, don't feel ashamed or embarrassed- these offenders are convincing liars and anyone can be misled. Help make sure no-one else becomes a victim by telling the police about what happened to you.

We can only catch bogus callers with your information.

For further crime reduction advice about bogus officials, please telephone Merseyside Police on
0151 709 6010 and ask to speak to your local Crime Reduction Officers. Anyone who has information about this kind of burglary is urged to contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.


Sent: Tue 30th March 2010 11:45 - Message from Trading Standards


Residents have reported a number of
bogus charity collection leaflets dropping through letterboxes.

The leaflets ask for donations of clothing, sheets, handbags,shoes, toiletries, mobile phones and
claim the items will be sent to Third World countries and reused.

Sefton Council Trading Standards have been contacted about the leaflets and discovered the company number on leaflet shows it has been dissolved for some time.

The traders were seen in a white van and have been operating in the Hightown area for the past couple of weeks.


Sefton Council Trading Standards manager, Andrew Naisbitt, said:

"Sadly, some door-to-door collections are not made by genuine registered charities but by businesses who simply sell the goods for profit. If consumers realise this, they may prefer to pass the goods directly to a local registered charity shop.

"There are many reputable charities that collect clothes and directly benefit good causes but it is always a good idea to
check the credentials of the collectors before donating.

If possible, try and make a note of the description of the bogus collectors and the registration plate and make and model of any of their vehicles to pass on."


To check the existence of a charity:

 call The Charity Commission on 0845 300 0218 or visit

To check the existence and status of a Limited Company/Company Registration

contact Companies House on 0303 1234 500 or

To report incidents of bogus charities call Consumer Direct on 08454 040506

Home Watch realises these incidents took place in Hightown but a general alert for Sefton has been given out, because what has happened in Hightown could happen in your area.


Telephone-to-PC PHISHING

A member recently received a phone call from a man who purported to be from the Microsoft Software Maintenance Department.

 The lady who received the call was immediately suspicious as there was a delay with music before a male caller came on line.

He stated that her Microsoft computer software had a security fault which needed an urgent updated.   He asked the member to go online and that he would tell her what to do.

When challenged, the male caller became aggressive and wanted to know why she would not want to have her software corrected. She told him that she suspected he was not genuine and he immediately rang off.

Once again may we remind you to be wary of giving any personal details over the phone or in this case about your computer.

It could be someone trying to obtain details from your address book or other personal information.



A typical email "Phishing" Attempt ~ Sent to Me on 25th January '10

Your bank will not ask you to login via an email

I get a lot of fake email security login requests alleging to be from either; HSBC; NatWest; Lloyds; Alliance&Leicester; Abbey; Nationwide; etc. but I know all banks say things like ..

"cahoot will never send you an email asking you to enter, reconfirm or change your security details or other personal information. If you receive such an email or if you believe that you may have disclosed your details in any way, please call us on 0844 9000 900."

So I followed this link out of curiosity on behalf of HomeWatch and then reported it to Cahoot who quickly confirmed that it was a fake email & website. Their security department then took action against the webmaster.

The homepage presented looked identical to this bank's REAL login page, but its address was ...

so anyone not checking the address bar would inadvertently give their login details to a fraudster.




This one is pretty slick since they provide YOU with all the information, except the one piece they want. Note, the callers do not ask for your card number; they already have it.

This information is worth reading.

By understanding how the VISA & MasterCard Telephone Credit Card Scam works, you'll be better prepared to protect yourself, family & friends.

One of our employees was called from "VISA", and I was called from "MasterCard". The scam works like this:

Person calling says, "This is (name), and I'm calling from the Security and Fraud Department at VISA. My badge number is 12460. Your card has been flagged for an unusual purchase pattern, and I'm calling to verify. This would be on your VISA card which was issued by (name of your credit card co.) did you purchase an Anti-Telemarketing Device for £497.99 from a Marketing company based in London?"

When you say "No", the caller continues with, "Then we will be issuing a credit to your account. This is a company we have been watching and the charges range from £297 to £497, just under the £500 purchase pattern that flags most cards. Before your next statement, the credit will be sent to (gives you your address), is that correct?"

You say "yes". The caller continues; "I will be starting a fraud investigation. If you have any questions, you should call the 0800 number listed on the back of your card (0800-VISA) and ask for Security. You will need to refer to this Control No. The caller then gives you a 6 digit number. "Do you need me to read it again?"

Here's the IMPORTANT part on how the scam works : the caller then says, "I need to verify you are in possession of your card." He'll ask you to "turn your card over and look for some numbers." There are 7 numbers; the first 4 are part of your card number, the next 3 are the security numbers that verify you are the possessor of the card. These are the numbers you sometimes use to make Internet purchases to prove you have the card. The caller will ask you to read the 3 numbers to him.

After you tell the caller the 3 numbers (your cvv security no.) he'll say, "That is correct, I just needed to verify that the card has not been lost or stolen, and that you still have your card. Do you have any other questions?" After you say, "No," the caller then thanks you and states, "Don't hesitate to call back if you do", and hangs up.

You actually say very little, and they never ask for or tell you the Card number. But after we were called, we called back within 20 minutes to ask a question. Are we glad we did!

The REAL VISA Security Department told us it was a scam and in the last 15 minutes a new purchase of £497.99 was charged to our card.

Long story - short - we made a real fraud report and closed the VISA account. What the scammers want is the 3-digit PIN number on the back of the card. Don't give it to them. Instead, tell them you'll call VISA or MasterCard directly for verification of their conversation.

The real VISA told us that they do not need to ask for anything on the card as they already know that information! 

The police said they are taking several of these reports daily! They also urged us to tell everybody we know that this scam is happening. Please pass this on to all your family and friends. By informing each other, we protect each other.

from: PCSO 7135 Alison Monks - Lostock Hall Neighbourhood Policing Team





A HomeWatch member received a phone call last week. The caller started the conversation by "My name is Rahj, and I am calling to inform you of a new Government initiative, enabling you to reduce or eradicate any debt"

At this point the person receiving the call told him she wasn't interested, but he persisted and
asked for personal details, name, address and bank details etc. After ending the call the member dialled 1471 and found the number registered was 0301.

On contacting BT on 0800 661 441 we discovered that this number was an untraceable International call from an unidentified country. BT are making every effort to trace the caller. These people can be very persistent and will possibly make further calls to your phone number.

Crime Prevention advice is as always do not give any personal details to anyone if you receive any unsolicited calls.





Online bankers in the borough are being warned of a potential email scam. Residents have been contacting Trading Standards over an internet scam which tries to get online bankers to update confidential information like bank account details and passwords.

Emails are being sent which state:
'You have received this email because we have strong reason to believe that your account had been recently compromised. In order to prevent any fraudulent activity from occurring we are required to open an investigation into this matter.

'If your account informations are not updated within the next 72 hours, then we will assume this account is fraudulent and will be suspended. We apologize for this inconvenience, but the purpose of this verification is to ensure that your account has been fraudulently used and to combat fraud.'

Known as phishing, this is an old scam but Trading Standards are concerned because the email states accounts will be suspended which may panic people into replying.

Sefton Council Standards manager, Andrew Naisbitt, said:
"Scams of this nature have been around for some time but this particular one may force some people into replying as they fear their account will be suspended.

"If you receive any suspicious emails like this, you should forward them to your bank. You should also contact your bank immediately if you have replied to them or given away any financial information.

"Please don't caught out and be aware that these type of scams exist."

If you think you have been a victim of this scam call consumer Direct for advice on 08454 040 506





Charitable residents in Sefton are being warned to check the authenticity of 'charity' collections circulating in the borough.

Recently Trading Standards officers have been contacted by a number of concerned residents from across the borough who have received leaflets through their letter boxes asking for clothing and other items. Generally the leaflets say they are collecting for charity and the needy, when in fact some of them are from
bogus collectors.

Trading Standards officers don't want residents to stop giving to legitimate charities and those in need, but are asking them to follow some simple steps.

Trading Standards manager, Andrew Naisbitt, said: "Donating your clothing and other goods to genuine charities helps to raise vital funds. Please make sure that your donation goes to a
legitimate charity or organisation collecting on their behalf.

" Take care when making your donation and make sure that your help goes to those who really need it - and that charities don't lose out. "Unfortunately, some anonymous bogus collectors may try to exploit your generosity for their own gain - some of these have been operating in the Sefton area.

" They may also
steal donations left for collection for genuine charities and it estimated these bogus collections cost charities at least £2 million a year.

" But don't be taken in. Always read the small print and know exactly where your donation is going. Try to check the contact details, as they might be

" Remember, if there is no legitimate telephone number, the people who put the leaflet through your door don't want to call - for a reason."




(Ringmaster message for residents in Maghull Neighbourhood from Sefton Crime Prevention Office)


A man knocked at the door at a property in the Netherton area recently & asked the resident if they had any old jewellery to sell.

The male was very polite but seemed eager to get into the house.
A second man was seen near the gate he seemed to be waiting for the man who had called at the property.

The male at the door was white, had a bald head, wore glasses was described as of stocky build, about 5' 9" tall and about 60 years old.
He was wearing a navy blue waterproof coat and had a
laminated I.D. badge that appeared to be home made.

Please take extra precautions when strangers call at your door:

* This is the time to put your door chain on before opening the door.
* Always ask for an ID card but remember these can easily be made using a computer and a laminating machine.
*DO NOT let them into your house unless you are sure of their identity and would be happy to have them in your home.
* Be prepared to check on any firm they claim to be from, and use the telephone directory to get the correct phone No.
*If in doubt keep them out.
*If you live on your own and after checking they are from a genuine company, you want them to return, ask a friend, relative or neighbour to be with you for the second visit.
* Genuine people are willing to wait while you check.
* Keep yourself safe at all times.


Deception Theft Attempts (or worse)

Strange Visitor ~ A Member Alert via email ~ 20/11/2008


Just a note to tell you of a incident that happened last night to a friend in Maghull.

They were woken up at 4am by people claiming to be plain clothes police. They said that the garage door was open, the garage light was on and that the man's vehicle's doors were open. They asked the lady owner if she was alone, when she said no and they went on their way in a car!

The garage door was closed and the light was off, the cars doors were shut too.

The couple phoned the police to check and they said they don't do that sort of thing.


Strange Visitor #2 ~ A Member Alert via email ~ 20/10/2008


I live at ***** Clent Road in Maghull and thought I would inform you of a strange and unnerving experience last night.

At 11pm the doorbell rang twice.  I went downstairs and opened the front door which is at the side of the house, to be confronted by a strange man at the (locked) outer porch door.  He asked us a number of questions such as "could I spare him a minute?" and "will I open the door?"  I refused all requests and asked him to go away.  He then asked us how long we had been here and questions about the back garden.  I closed the door, put the alarms back on and went upstairs. 

Looking out of the window I could see him walking away towards Clent Avenue. 

I then called Merseyside Police who sent round 2 police officers and a car about 15 minutes later - which was very reassuring. 

The man was white, about 40, long mousy hair. 5'10" wearing a long dark trench coat.  He seemed well spoken and didn't appear to be under the influence of drink or drugs, but very strange.

The police said to dial 999 if he calls again and not to engage in conversation with him.


Email "Phishing" Attempt ~ Sent to ME on 23rd September '08

Although this looks very much like a genuine HSBC email, it is a SCAM ~ you can see that by hovvering over the "Clicking here" link revealed a less than direct route to HSBC ~ It is probably a look-a-like-HSBC page, in front of a porn website, asking for you to verify your bank details!!!

Banks will NEVER threaten you with account suspension like in this email and usually ask you to log into your a/c normally, NOT via an email.

So don't follow an email link ~ it may look real, but you will just get yourself a whole lot of trouble.


Below is another very genuine looking email ~ but note the " From: " address . . .

Surely Lloyds know how to spell their own name !!!!!

( once again, the "Click to Resolve" link does not point to Lloyds TSB )



Royal Mail Scam ~ 04/04/08

Just to alert you about the latest Spanish Lotto scam letter doing the rounds. 

The letter was from  ‘Euromillones Loteria International’ which was addressed to an elderly lady who lived at this address a number of years ago. Enclosed was a form headed ‘Perfect Global Security Company S.L’ based in Madrid, asking for bank details to claim the prize.

Obviously we re-cycled the letter along with other junk mail, but maybe you could alert other members who might be less informed.

Thanks to Mrs T. of Maghull for this warning


2 email Deception-Attempt Scams ~ Sent to me this week (notice the 'To:' line)

(either cons, or I am VERY lucky & VERY, VERY rich! lol)

-----Original Message-----
Sent: 08 April 2008 18:01
To: undisclosed-recipients:



-----Original Message-----
From: The National Lottery []
Sent: 07 April 2008 18:47
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: You Just Won!! Contact (Mr Paul David) For Claims

The National Lottery
PO Box 1010
Liverpool L70 1NL United Kingdom
Ref: UK/6648D/09
Batch: 080/07/MK881

Dear Lucky Winner,

We are pleased to announce your email address as one of the 200 lucky winners in the UK Lotto draw held on the 4th of April 2008. All 200 winning addresses were randomly selected from a batch of £1,500,000.00 (one million five hundred thousand pound sterling) international emails addresses.Consequently, you have therefore been approved for a total payout of GBP £1,500,000.00 (one million five hundred thousand pound sterling) only.

Your email address emerged along side with 199 others as a category of winner in this year's Annual Draw.The UK lottery draw is held once in every four years interval.And is also organized to encourage the use of internet and computers.We are proud to say that over GBP £25 Million Pounds are won annually in more than 150 countries world-wide.For security reasons, you are advised to keep your winning information confidential until you claim your prize money.This is part of our precautionary measure to avoid double claiming and unwarranted abuse of this program. Please be warned.

Fill the form below to enable us process you winning prize.

1. Full Name: ..........
2. Address: ............
3. Nationality: ........
4. Date of Birth:.. ....
5. Occupation: .........
6. Phone: ..............
7. Mobile: .............
8. Fax: ................
9. Sex:.................

Name: Mr.Paul David
Tel: +44-704-5737128

Sarah May.
Promotions Manager
Congratulations once again.




Deception Attempt

A man posing as a Transco worker tried to gain entry to one of our members houses this week.

They were not sure he was a genuine representative so refused him entry & checked with British Gas who confirmed that he was not sent by them.

Be aware of these con-men ~ a real employee will be happy to wait while you check with whoever sent them as to whether or not it is a legitimate visit.

For ease & safety, a password can be arranged with companies such as British Gas or Manweb.




Email Deception / Phishing' Attempt scams ~ Sent to ME regularly

( Sent to various email address & concerning banks which I do NOT even use )

both are so similar they are probably from the same source = not very clever

If you did click on their link it will take you to their website which might look official but will just copy your login details and be used for fraud against you or in your name (identity theft)

From: NatWest []
Sent: 23 September 2007 14:32
To: Mike.wise
Subject: [SPAM] National Westminster Bank: security alert!


Dear NatWest Bank customer,

NatWest Bank Customer Service requests you to complete Online Banking Customer Form.

This procedure is obligatory for all internet banking users of NatWest Bank.

Please click hyperlink below to access Online Banking Customer Form.

Please do not respond to this email.

Copyright 2007. National Westminster Bank plc. All Rights Reserved.

From: The Royal Bank of Scotland []
Sent: 22 September 2007 11:07
To: Mike.woodward
Subject: [SPAM] The Royal Bank of Scotland Customer Service: Urgent Notification! (message id: wp5762163320498)


Dear customer of The Royal Bank of Scotland,

RBS Customer Service requests you to complete Digital Banking Online Form.

This procedure is obligatory for all RBS Digital Banking users.

Please click hyperlink below to access Digital Banking Online Form.

Please do not respond to this email.


The Royal Bank of Scotland © 2007

revision: 0x84, 0x254, 0x85294455, 0x10, 0x77882184


Deception / Phishing' Attempt scams ~ Sent to ME recently

( re: an ebay item I did bid on ~ but not from the REAL owner of the item as he already had all of my details required for a proper ebay transaction )

From: eBay []
Sent: 18 August 2007 14:16
Subject: Question from eBay Member -- Item 30014050****


I'm the owner of this item (the one you've recently bided on) "Compaq Evo N600c Plll 1.2 GHZ Laptop (30014050****)".
I am in a bussines trip for 3 weeks and i want to close the auction earlier because i don't have time for it so please let me know your best price.
I`ll provide you 5 days money back guarantee, no questions asked. That means within 5 working days you decide if you don't want to keep the item. The deal will go strictly according to ebay's rules and policy regarding to this buy it now offer- to start the official transaction, i need to know:
Your best price:
First name:
Last name:
Shipping address:

As soon as i have them i'll start the official procedure, and ebay will notify you about this. You'll also receive important guidelines + instructions from them (please go through them exactly).
I'll handle and pay for the shipping, so this will be free of charge for you.
Waiting for your answer ASAP!

Thank you



Deception / Phishing' Attempt scam ~ Sent to ME ~ 04/04/07

( Sent to an email address which I do NOT even use for PAYPAL )

  Dear PayPal customer! 

As part of our security measures, we regularly screen activity in the
PayPal system. We recently contacted you after noticing an issue on your
account. We requested information from you for the following reason:

We recently received a report of unauthorized credit card use
associated with this account. As a precaution, we have limited access to your
PayPal account in order to protect against future unauthorized
transactions. You can check your transaction details here:
~ Case ID Number: PP-298-334-670

If, after reviewing your transaction information, you
seek further clarification regarding your account access, please contact
PayPal by visiting the Help Center and clicking "Contact Us".

We thank you for your prompt attention to this matter. Please
understand that this is a security measure intended to help protect you and your
account. We apologize for any inconvenience.

PayPal Account Review Department

PayPal Email ID PP733




Deception Theft scam ~ Occurred in Summerhill Drive.


Four men pulled up in a car outside a house. The bonnet was lifted, one went under it while one stayed in the car. Two men knocked on a nearby front door and asked for a spanner. 

The homeowner went to get some tools, and, yes you've guessed it - the unattended man nipped into the open front door of the house and lifted two bunches of car keys which WERE KEPT ON THE WINDOW LEDGE!!! The spanner was returned seconds later and everybody went in when the car was driven off.

Minutes later the THIEVES drove off in the kindly homeowner's two brand new cars. What can we say?

Thanks to Committee member Eric for this warning.




Identity Theft:


As reported in our local paper ~ bin-bags were stolen from Lydiate & Melling by a gang driving a white van !!!

There is only one reason for this is to find YOUR bank statements & YOUR credit card receipts AND then steal YOUR identity to run up debts in YOUR name.

It is very difficult to prove it was not your spending and then you will not be able to get any additional credit yourself ~ the defaults remain on your credit history for a damaging 6 years!

The solution is to shred any financial documents and receipts when you dispose of them.



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