View from the Chamber – week 28

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Online fraud and scams in Scotland have increased 69% since 2011/12 according to the latest Recorded Crime in Scotland survey.

In response, the Little Book of Big Scams has been created through a collaboration between Police Scotland, Scottish Business Resilience Centre and Royal Bank of Scotland.

This guide warns about 19 types of scams to look out for, alongside practical guidance on how to spot them and what to do should you fall victim to one.

Holidays, tickets for sporting and music events, and unsolicited emails are three prime targets for fraudsters, according to this latest resource. The organisations have collaborated on this new guide providing practical advice to help Scots avoid the pitfalls. The top three scam areas are:

Ticketing fraud

With sports and music events, people need to be mindful where to buy their tickets, so they are not left empty handed. The guide advises that tickets should be bought from the official event promoter only, and to be aware of anyone asking to pay for tickets via bank transfer.

Holiday fraud

Online scammers are exploiting this summer’s pressures on the travel industry, coupled with a desire for Scots seeking a sunshine break. The guide outlines the traps, such as booking accommodation and other travel services that do not exist, resulting in stressful financial repercussions.

Scam mail

Individuals can be enticed via post or emails by an unbelievable offer or competition, typically targeting the elderly or vulnerable. The guide advises consumers to be wary about sharing their personal details and so-called prizes that do not require an entry.
Anyone who thinks that they are the victim of a scam should contact their bank immediately on an official phone number, such as the one on a bank statement or bank/credit card.

The Little Book of Big Scams is available to download by accessing www.lochaberchamber.co.uk/news