Landmark Cybercrime Survey

Neighbourhood Watch has today launched a landmark new survey to understand the impact of cybercrime on communities across England and Wales.

Traditionally Neighbourhood Watch has been focused on keeping people safe in the places they live but with the advent of new technology, it’s clear people can be at their most vulnerable when they occupy online spaces.

Action Fraud, the national fraud and cybercrime reporting centre run by the City of London Police, revealed that last year cybercrime victims lost £28m to online criminals. It reports more than 12,000 cases of cybercrime every six months.

With the threat from online criminals only ever increasing, it is essential we understand the impact this type of crime has on members as well as their understanding and perception of cybercrime.

The survey, designed in conjunction with cybersecurity company Avast, takes just 10 minutes to complete and one lucky responder will be in with a chance to win £50 worth of Marks and Spencer vouchers.

The survey can be completed via the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/nw_cybercrime

This news story on our website can be shared with friends, family and neighbours or on your social media profiles: https://www.ourwatch.org.uk/landmark-cybercrime-survey-launched/

Test Valley Rural Policing

Leaving aside the likes of CID and Intelligence, there are two levels of “Local Policing”.
The Response Teams are based at Hedge End and Andover. These are the officers who respond to 999 calls and the more urgent matters reported via 101. In the limited time between calls, they patrol areas based on intelligence and crime patterns.

Alongside that there are the Neighbourhood Teams, which is where we come in. Andover and Romsey towns are policed by their own neighbourhood teams. The Rural area, in-between and surrounding the two towns, is covered by us, the Test Valley Rural Team. We investigate local crime matters, work with partner agencies to solve problems and patrol hot spot areas.

Test Valley District covers an area of over 200 square miles and our patch covers all of the rural beats, from Vernham Dean in the North to Wellow in the South and from the Wiltshire border across to the border of Winchester. Police Sergeant Lyons looks after the team which is comprised of three Police Constables and three Police Community Support Officers. That’s a relatively limited resource for such a big area. If there was ever a time when a PC or a PCSO had responsibility for only one village, sadly those times have gone. Below are the team members and the areas for which we are responsible.

We work very hard to focus our attention on the right places and on ‘High Risk’ and ‘High Harm’ people and places. To do that we rely completely on the public reporting what is happening. We often hear people state that “crime is so bad these days”, but there are no crime figures to support that. That is either just a perception that crime is bad, or, more likely, an under-reporting of crime.

We know that sometimes calling us on 101 doesn’t always go through as quickly as we would like, this is often due to high demand. Please be patient – we need the information that you are ringing to tell us. You can now report to us online on our website www.hampshire.police.uk. You can report crime, road traffic accidents, anti-social behaviour, missing people, civil disputes, lost/found property, lost/stolen vehicles to us online. We can’t encourage you enough: please tell us what is happening. But please; don’t expect us to take reports via e-mail. You need us to be out and about, not sat in an office creating reports. If you try to report something directly to one of the team via e-mail we will politely decline.

When you make a report you may be told it will be filed as there are no lines of enquiry. Don’t worry: we still see what’s been reported from our daily searches, so we do capture the information.

Please consider signing up to Hampshire Alerts. We use this system to send out information and alerts. We send out location-specific alerts to ensure that people receive information that is likely to be useful for them. When you sign up you can tell the system the types of alert that you want to receive or do not want to receive. We are also using Twitter. Follow us on @TestVlyRuralPol. We are aware that many people prefer Facebook as a means of networking—we will be coming to Facebook soon.

The team resources are slowly coming back up to the numbers that they should be, so we will be able to get out into the communities that we have across our district.

Scams Latest: BT and Your Bank

There seems to have been an increase in the old “This is BT, your broadband is going to be cut off” calls, this time the message is recorded. Ignore the call, I wish I had a pound for every time my broadband was going to be cut off in the last twelve months, and it is still working well. If you are really worried contact BT directly.

The following was issued by Hampshire Constabulary:

TV Licence Fraud

SCAM AND FRAUD ALERT

From Hampshire and IOW Neighbourhood Watch

HINWA (http://www.hinwa-nw.org.uk). April 2019.

TV Licence Billing, Renewal or Refund Fraud

Since September 2018 there have been large numbers of reports of fake emails purporting to be from TV Licensing. Scams involve emails claiming that either a refund is due or there is a problem with billing or with the account. The links in the emails lead to phishing websites designed to steal personal and financial information.

They will use headlines such as ‘correct your licensing information’, ‘billing information updates’ and ‘renew now’ to trick people into clicking on the link within the email.

These emails are sophisticated and convincing. They can catch out anyone – even the Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk admitted to being out caught by this scam earlier this year.

How to keep safe from this type of fraud

1. Always be suspicious of unsolicited requests for personal or financial information in case it is a scam.

2. Never automatically click on links in an unexpected email or text.

3. If in doubt, check with the organisation by phone or email using contact details from your records – do not use contact details given by the fraudsters

4. Do not be rushed into action. If in doubt, delete the email. A genuine organisation will always find a different way to contact you.

If you’ve fallen victim – what next?

5. Stop further payments – contact your bank or cancel your credit card. (Monitor your statements regularly for any unusual activity.)

6. Report this has happened – contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or online at actionfraud.police.uk.

More

For more advice on signs to look for and how to avoid being a victim of this type of fraud go to the Action Fraud website: https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/alert/action-fraud-warns-against-fake-tv-licensing-emails-as-over-2500-reports-are-made-in-two-months-alone

 

Is Your Number Up?

South Central Ambulance Trust have issued the following:

Lives are at risk because emergency crews cannot see house numbers and property names easily. As illness and injuries can occur at any time, we ask you to ensure your house name or number is clearly visible from the road by day and night, so that, when you need us most, we can find you quickly and easily.

The three following steps would assist us greatly:

  • Check your house name or number is visible from the road
  • Make sure that there are no trees or bushes obstructing the sign
  • Switch on, when possible, an outside light.

It is essential that when the emergency services are called we can find the address as quickly and as easily as possible. We encourage all members of the public to ensure that their house name or number is as visible as possible at all times.

Our crews have the assistance of sat-navs and, of course, local knowledge. However, when visiting an address for the first time, not being able to see a name or number clearly from the roadside could result in delays for emergency services reaching people.

Some addresses can be very difficult to find, particularly in rural areas. Every second wasted because paramedics can’t find the right house has a profound effect on the outcome, so we’re encouraging everyone to spend a few minutes doing something about it.

We recommend making sure:

  • that numbers or house names are at least three inches in height and 4ft above the ground
  • if the property is more that 75ft from the roadway, that the number is displayed on a post-box/gate or similar no further that 25ft from the edge of the street.

It can be frustrating and time-consuming for visitors and delivery people to identify addresses but, in emergency situations, it could literally be the difference between life and death.

Please help us to help you!

Operation Scrooge

Operation Scrooge – Campaign Launched To Target Shoplifting in Andover

Officers from Andover’s Neighbourhood Policing Team will be out in force to deter shoplifters in the run-up to Christmas.

Operation Scrooge will see officers liaise with retailers, give advice to shoppers and carry out high-visibility patrols in Andover town centre and its retail parks.

The operation starts on Saturday 24th November, when members of the team will put on a crime prevention stall in the High Street between 10am and 2pm, to remind shoppers of the steps they can take to protect themselves and their property.

The campaign is due to finish on Monday 31st December.

Sergeant Mike Thorne, of Andover’s Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “As Christmas approaches, more and more people will be out and about in our town’s shops and banks.

Andover is a safe place to live and work but it is not immune to people who wish to take advantage of shoppers and businesses at this time of year.

The aim of our operation is to deter and detect crime and to provide reassurance to the public and businesses.

We will continue to use tactics that have proved successful in previous years to make sure those who commit crime in the town centre are dealt with robustly.”

Advice

We would like to take this opportunity to remind people of the steps they can take to protect their property when shopping:

  • Never leave a bag unattended in a trolley, even for a couple of seconds;
  • Make sure your handbag is closed;
  • Try to keep wallets in an inside pocket and out of sight from a potential pickpocket;
  • Keep your PIN number confidential;
  • If possible try to pay for all items on a debit or credit card, rather than carry large amounts of cash;
  • Ensure all windows and doors are closed and locked before leaving your car.

Scamnesty

Monxton Neighbourhood Watch
David James
01264 710049 djamescdr@gmail.com

19 September 2018

As nobody else seems to want to take on the job of Neighbourhood Watch coordinator, and as I now have some time, I thought I would try and take up where I left off.

This has also been prompted by the increase in fraudulent activity being visited on our community, a number of instances of which have been reported to me. For this reason I hope that the latest Police initiative will interest you.

From now until Christmas, the Office of the Police Crime Commissioner is running a Fraud Scamnesty campaign. Targeting the older and vulnerable members of our communities in particular, it encourages people to report scams, provides advice on how to avoid becoming a victim of fraud, and aims to raise awareness of the financial and emotional impact that fraud can have on victims.

In partnership with Hampshire Constabulary colleagues and Neighbourhood Watch, members of the team will be at a number of Fraud Roadshow events across the Hampshire policing area and will support those working with older and vulnerable people in spotting the signs and providing the right help and advice. Scamnesty boxes have also been placed in libraries and Citizens Advice Bureaus to allow people to post details of scams that they have received, anonymously if they so wish, which will then be used for further analysis.

A full list of participating libraries and CABs as well as a list of roadshow events can be found on the PCC website: http://www.hampshire-pcc.gov.uk/scamnesty
For those unable to access the link to the website the Friday Fraud Roadshow will be at Tesco in Andover on 26th October from 09.30 to 15.30.

I am available if anyone needs advice, please note change of email address.

David James