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Fraud Alert – Phishing Email Re Penalty Charge

Please be aware of a Fixed Penalty Notice scam which is current circulating.

The email, which claims to be from HM Courts and Tribunals Service, tells people that they must pay a fine for failing to pay the fee for using their vehicle on a certain road.  It suggests that the amount payable will increase if the fine is not paid within 14/28 days.  It then asks you to click on a link to make the payment.

This is a typical phishing email, designed to convince you to click on the link and give away personal and sensitive information.

We advise you to never click on any links from unsolicited emails.  If you think it might really be from an organisation you have an existing relationship with, such as your bank, double check.  Go back to something you can trust.  Visit the official website, log in to your account or phone them direct using a trusted number.  Don’t use the links or contact details in the email you have been sent.

If you think you have received a suspicious email, forward it to the Suspicious Email Reporting Service at report@phishing.gov.uk

If you have already responded to this scam and lost money, contact your bank and report the crime to Action Fraud on 0330 123 2040 or online at www.actionfraud.police.uk

Stop – Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.

Challenge – Could it be fake? It’s ok to reject, refuse or ignore any requests.  Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.

Protect – Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud.

Message Sent By
Gillian Fleet (Police, Preventing financial fraud officer, Lincolnshire

Warning re catalytic converter thefts and crime prevention advice

Warning re Catalytic Converter Thefts
We have received a number of reports of catalytic converter thefts around the county relating to vehicles parked on the road, driveways and in the past car parks.
Please be vigilant and if you see anyone acting suspiciously around or under a vehicle please call the police. Offenders can take only a short amount of time to take the catalytic converter but can cause damage and considerable cost to the vehicle.
If it is safe for you to do so please take any pictures and details of the people and any related vehicles.
Crime Prevention Advice
The simplest way to prevent catalytic converter theft is to put your vehicle in a garage or secured area if you have one. Alarms, lighting and CCTV can also help to deter thieves.
Other ways to protect your vehicle include:
• Buying and fitting a protection device specifically to cover the catalytic converter
• Installing motion-activated lighting if you park your vehicle on a driveway, but if this isn’t possible, park it in a well-lit, busy area
• Using your vehicle’s alarm or installing a Thatcham approved alarm, which should activate if the vehicle is tilted or lifted
• Ensuring your dashcam is set to detect movement
• Looking out for anyone ‘working’ or acting suspiciously under vehicles (particularly in busy car parks)
• In addition, if you are going to be visiting somewhere for a long period of time (e.g. a supermarket), we would advise you to park so it is difficult for thieves to lift your vehicle.
• Avoid parking your vehicle half on the pavement and half on the road, as this may make it easier for thieves to access the catalytic converter
• If parking in a public car park, consider parking alongside other cars and facing you bonnet towards the wall if possible. With the catalytic converter positioned at the front of your vehicle, this will make it harder for thieves to get close enough to steal it
Marking kits can also be purchased, including through Neighbourhood Watch; marking can assist police investigations as converters can be tracked back to the vehicle they came from if located.

Crime prevention advice

We’d like to take this opportunity to remind you of the following crime prevention advice:

  • Leave a light on when you leave your property to deter opportunistic burglars.
  • Shut and lock all windows and external doors when you are not using the room, at night, and when you leave your property
  • If your home has UPVC doors or windows with multi-point locks make sure they are locked with a key and that door handles have been lifted properly. Remove the key after the door or window is locked and leave it out of sight.
  • Don’t leave other keys visible from outside your home or near a letterbox.
  • Consider using timer switches for lights and other electrical appliances like radios while you are out.
  • Ensure side gates are locked to prevent access to the rear of the property and that ladders and tools are properly locked away. Consider an alarm system that’s clearly visible and outside lighting to deter opportunistic thieves.
  • Always check who is knocking before you open your door and use door chains and spy holes to help you to identify who it is. Don’t feel pressured to open the door and call 101 to report anyone acting suspiciously.
  • Register your property at www.immobilise.com to improve the chances of getting your property back if it’s stolen.
  • Mark your property with a forensic marking product such as www.selectadna.co.uk

Extraordinary General Meeting Rutland Neighbourhood Watch Association