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HMRC Fraud Alert

Action Fraud has experienced an increase in the reporting of malicious calls, voicemails, text messages or emails to members of the public purporting to be from HMRC.

Action Fraud has experienced an increase in the reporting of malicious calls, voicemails, text messages or emails to members of the public purporting to be from HMRC.

The fraudsters state that as a result of their non-payment of tax or other duty, the victim is liable to prosecution or other legal proceedings such as repossession of belongings to settle the balance but can avoid this by arranging for payment to be made immediately by method such as bank transfer or by iTunes gift cards.

If the victim is hesitant or refuses to comply, the suspect makes a threat such as immediate arrest, bailiffs or in cases where the victim appears to be of overseas origin; deportation.

Often, the period for which the tax is allegedly due is distant enough to guarantee the victim will have little, if any, paperwork or ability to verify the claims. Once the money is paid the suspects sever all contact.

It is vital that the public exercise caution when receiving messages or telephone calls of this nature.

What you need to do
Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information. Just because someone knows your basic details (such as your name and contact details), it doesn’t mean they are genuine. Instead, contact the company directly using trusted methods such as a known email address or phone number.

Listen to your instincts. If something feels wrong then it is usually right to question it. No genuine organisation will ask you to pay taxes, bills or fees using iTunes Gift Cards, or any other type of voucher.

Don’t be rushed or pressured into making a decision. Under no circumstances would a genuine bank or some other trusted organisation force you to make a financial transaction on the spot.

Report Phishing attempts. If you receive a call, text or email of this nature and have not lost money, report this as a phishing attempt to Action Fraud.

Kind regards,

Bromley Neighbourhood Watch Association

BromleyStreetSign

Find us on the Web at: www.bnwa.co.uk

Don’t let burglars ruin your Xmas

Don’t give burglars your presents this Xmas

Even as we plan a perfect Xmas, burglars could be planning to ruin it.

Bromley Police and Neighbourhood Watch volunteers are working hard to reduce burglaries on the Borough. However it is not possible to prevent every offence from occurring. If you are a victim of burglary, below are some actions you can take to improve the chances of catching the suspect and bringing them to justice.

* Remember to always report to Police as soon as possible. Use 101 for non-emergency reporting or 999 if it is an emergency.

* Establish if objects have been moved. Have any drawers or cupboards been opened? List where these items are and try to keep them untouched for when Police attend.

* Try to find the place of entry and exit used by the burglar. Try to keep this area untouched. Are there any footprints? If you find a route you think was used, try to find another route to use yourself so as not to disturb evidence.

* Has anything been eaten or drunk out of? Are there discarded cigarettes or tools? If so, note where and let officers know when they attend.

* If you feel comfortable, make enquiries with neighbours. Did they see or hear anything? Try to find a time of the incident and any other specific details to pass on to officers.

* If you believe they have been stolen, cancel bank debit/credit cards.

* Think back over the past few days. Has anyone been hanging around, acting suspiciously? The smallest piece of information can help identify a suspect.

* If you saw the suspect and think you would recognise them again, tell the reporting officer so they can give you the opportunity to identify them.

* You will be asked to make a statement so think of all relevant details the officer may need to help progress the investigation.

* Please let us know whether you have any special requirements i.e. you are disabled or feel particularly vulnerable.

We hope you are never in a position where you need to take this advice. However, if it does happen to you we hope it will assist you.

For further advice on Burglary prevention please go to www.met.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/residential-burglary/