People are being urged not to fall foul of mass-marketed scams that are believed to cost as much as £5bn.
Scam awareness month is about consumers getting together with the help of their representative organisations, including the Citizens Advice service and Trading Standards,
It’s about consumers refusing to be rushed by scammers, refusing to be hushed into silence by a sense of shame, foolhardiness or weary acceptance.
Key messages being sent out from the Hartlepool Citizens’ Advice Bureau and Hartlepool Borough Council’s Trading Standards include; if it sounds too good to be true it probably is; if in doubt, don’t reply; don’t be rushed – resist pressure to make a decision straight away; never send money to someone you have never met and you should not have to pay anything to get a prize.
Hartlepool CAB manager, Joe Michna said: “New scams appear all the time and these include scams related to pensions, investment, dating, subscription traps and courier scams.
“Working with other organisations such as trading standards it is our intention during Scam Awareness Month to alert and warn people of the dangers that can be involved in being sucked into a scam.
“Sometimes the impact of a scam can be ruinous: a lifetime of careful planning and saving wiped clean in the space of a telephone conversation, at the stroke of a pen, in the click of a mouse. However, we are here to help.”
Advice is available from the CAB on 01429 408401, the Citizens Advice Consumer Advice Service – 08454 040506 and Ation Fraud on 0300 1232040.