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Spotting fraud or scams

Updated: 24 March 2021 at 09:10am

There has been a lot of news recently about the rise in fraud and scams during the pandemic. While frauds and scams aren't new, criminals are taking advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to advertise fake services or products that aim to exploit you financially or collect your personal information. Scammers typically target people through emails, letters, phone or text and succeed because they look legitimate. 

We have had reports that scammers are contacting residents claiming to be solicitors specialising in disrepair and other cases related to housing. 

As most of us continue to work from home during this time, we encourage you to beware and remain vigilant of any communication that may be suspicious. 

If you think a fraudster or scammer has targeted you, please consider the things below:

  • If you have never met the person online or are unsure of the business is genuine, take some time to do some research
  • Check the spelling and grammar within the email, text, or letter. Remember, if it reads or sounds too good to be true – it could be a scam
  • Be cautious of suspicious texts, emails, and phone calls. Check to see if you recognise the name, email address or telephone number of the person contacting you
  • Be alert to anyone asking for money or your bank details
  • Be wary of any links and attachments. Never enter your personal information, password, or bank details after clicking a link.

One person who was recently targeted by fraudsters was our Resident Board Member, Simon Barlow.

Simon said: "I was recently targeted by a company looking for people to report issues with their home and housing to get compensation. The subject of the email had tenant spelt incorrectly, which made me think it wasn't genuine. I avoided clicking any links and made sure I reported this to my email company as spam and to Action Fraud. If you're not sure if an email is genuine, make sure you ask a friend or family member to check it too and avoid giving out any personal information.”

If you think someone is trying to defraud or scam you, please contact us immediately and report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040