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Seer Green Alert 

Ringmaster Messages - Archive 2002

23 November 2002

3 Scams

The Perfume Sellers
The perfume sellers work in car parks and invite you to smell their perfume. However, reports indicate that the perfume actually knocks you out and the sellers then take your valuables.

Bogus Television Licence Official
This is particularly directed at communal housing. In this instance the bogus official requests payment for a communal television licence. We have been advised that this offender can be persistent and argumentative. He is described as white with sandy coloured hair, aged between 40 and 45 years and 5 feet 7 inches in height.

If you have any information relating to the Perfume Sellers or the Bogus Television Official you should contact Maria Marston on 01494 736643.

Fish Sellers
There have been reports of fish sellers in the area and sightings are often followed by a series of burglaries. On this occasion you are asked to report any sightings of fish sellers using a red van to Police Sergeant Tait and quote URN 1067. The telephone number is 01494 465888.

Thank you.


11 November 2002

Builders Scam

Be on your guard against bogus builders. That's the message from Chiltern Vale police after reports of elderly people being given substantial bills for minor repair work. The men and women pose as builders and carry out minor decorating or repair work. The bills then run into thousands of pounds.

DC Pete Collett, investigating the incidents said, "These traders pick on vulnerable people. I would warn everyone to be on their guard against these traders. Always get several quotes for any work you want carried out."

Anybody who may know anything about these incidents or these traders should contact DC Collett on 01494 686145 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111

Thank you.


5 November 2002

Email Scam

It appears that the Nigerian Banking scam has been re-activated. In this scam the target victim is contacted by the Manager of the Ecobank in Africa. The Manager asserts that there are millions of dollars available in an unclaimed account. The Manager suggests that this money can be claimed and asks for an e-mail address so that further details can be sent.

This is a scam and if you are approached in this way for personal information you should contact your Crime Reduction Officer at either Amersham Police Station on 01494 736644 or at High Wycombe Police Station on 01494 686111.

Thank you.


27 October 2002

Help The Aged
National SeniorSafety Campaign launched

More than 300,000 older people every year may be falling victim to bogus callers, new research from Help the Aged reveals. The figure is 16 times higher than estimated by the Government. In response, the British Gas Help the Aged SeniorSafety Campaign is launching a National SeniorSafety Campaign to raise awareness of the problem, educate older people at risk and demand that the Government recognises bogus caller crime as a separate recorded offence.

The research showed that more than half of older people fail to report bogus caller incidents to police and that a quarter of older people open their front door without taking precautions. Nearly a quarter of women over 60 worry every time they answer the door to unknown callers.

Four simple steps will help to prevent you becoming a victim of bogus caller crime:
ensure that doors are locked at all times when you are at home.
Always put the chain on before you open the door.
Always ask to see an identification care, then ring the company concerned to check that the caller is genuine.
Always ask the caller to call back later when you have someone with you if you are still unsure.

To register your support for the campaign to have bogus caller crime recorded as a separate offence by the police, email seniorsafety@helptheaged.org.uk

www.helptheaged.org.uk/CampaignsNews/News/_items/SeniorSafety.htm

Thank you.


09 October 2002

Tree Scam

We have recieved a warning from Buckinghamshire Trading Standards. In this instance three males knocked on the front door of a vulnerable person and offered to cut back some overgrown trees for £85. After five minutes of cutting back the trees they came back to the house and said that the trees were diseased and it would cost £450 to cut them down and dispose of them.

The lady gave them the only cash she had - £100 - because they refused to take a cheque. They immediately ran off with the money.

They were in a white truck with red writing on the side.

One of the offenders was tall with long shaggy hair and glasses and another was short, stocky and bald.

If you have any ideas or suggestions as to what we, and other agencies, can do to stop people becoming victims of this type of crime please let us know.

Thank you.


08 October 2002

Driveway Scam

We have been warned about a doorstep selling scam. In this instance the trader asked if he could store his roller on the driveway overnight. The next day the trader offered to do the driveway for £40 in return for storing the roller. The trader then asked for £4000 when the job was complete - the original charge of £40 was per square metre.

When the Police and Trading Standards were called the trader became rude and aggressive. We would remind you that the consumer should be given a contract with a clear explanation as to the cost of the job and their cancellation rights. The consumer is allowed seven days in which to change their mind. If cancellation rights are not issued it is a criminal offence and the contract cannot be enforced against the consumer.

In a con of this type the elderly are particularly vulnerable and it is important that this message is passed onto as many members of your community as possible.

Thank you.


30 September 2002

Scam Alert

Cash Machines

A theft of a switchcard occurred from the ATM machine at the Natwest Bank in Beaconsfield New Town. This type of scam has occurred in several towns throughout the Chiltern Vale area. This is a particular offence whereby the offender has placed a simple device over the card slot on the ATM.

The way to avoid this is to run your finger along the slot before putting your card into the ATM. The 'sleeve' has two tiny prongs which are used to get the card out of the slot, you should be able to feel these, therefore avoiding use of this machine.

A customer will insert their card which because of this device will be retained. The offender will then offer assistance and suggest re-entering your PIN number which he will remember. You will leave without your card which the offender will retrieve and go on to use having obtained you PIN.

If your card is retained by an ATM machine DO NOT re-enter your PIN. Beware of anyone standing behind you or close enough to obtain your P.I.N.

If you have any information relating to this offence, please telephone PC Chadd on 01494 686192.

Thank you.


19 August 2002

Fishy Business

Several neighbourhoods have recently been visited by door-to-door fish salesmen, possibly originating from the north-east. Similar calls were identified last year and their visits were closely followed by a series of house burglaries.
If you are visited by the fish sellers, please try to get a vehicle registration and pass it to PC Graham Dawson, Crime Reduction Officer on 01494 686111, if necessary please leave a voicemail message with your contact details.

Thank you.


1 August 2002

Beware of the Burglars

As many of you will be aware there is an increasing problem of thefts from sheds and garages - so keep them securely locked.

Also, if you have an alarm installed, the ground floor zone should be switched on at night. Please ensure all windows and doors are locked at night, and that no keys are left visible inside the house. A light left on upstairs and downstairs can act as a deterrent. You are asked to remain vigilant at this time.

... and remember that many deals offered by door-to-door salesman/women are often not what they appear to be at first sight. Be aware and get at least 2-3 quotes before entering into any major contract. Don't let them pressurise you - it's usually only a "clever" sales tactic.

Thank you.


1 August 2002

Message in a Bottle

THE LIONS CLUB SPONSORED MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE SCHEME IS A SIMPLE IDEA DESIGNED TO ENCOURAGE PEOPLE LIVING ON THEIR OWN TO KEEP THEIR PERSONAL AND MEDICAL DETAILS IN A COMMON LOCATION WHERE THEY CAN BE EASILY FOUND IN AN EMERGENCY.

THE PERSONAL INFORMATION IS KEPT IN A SMALL PLASTIC BOTTLE WHICH IS LOCATED IN THE HOUSEHOLD REFRIGERATOR WHERE THE EMERGENCY SERVICES WILL EXPECT TO LOOK FOR IT. STICKERS ARE PROMINENTLY LOCATED IN THE HOUSE TO ALERT THE EMERGENCY SERVICES PERSONNEL TO THE PRESENCE OF THE BOTTLE.

THE BOTTLE AND LABEL KITS ARE FREE OF CHARGE AND MAY BE COLLECTED AT MOST HEALTH CENTRES, DOCTORS SURGERIES AND CHEMISTS. FURTHER DETAILS MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE THAMES VALLEY POLICE NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH OFFICE, AMERSHAM.

Thank you.


24 July 2002

Telephone Call Scam

A woman knocks on your door, looking distressed and asks to use your phone to contact her husband as her car has broken down close to your house. You allow her to use your phone and wait whilst she phones her husband, she apologises for the delay as he is being called out of a meeting. Agreeing to meet him shortly at the car, she hangs up, thanks you politely for your kind assistance, even offers you a pound for the cost of the call and leaves.

Some time before this event, this lady had set up her own premium rateline with a telephone company and dictated that calls to that number be charged at £50 per minute. This is the same number she dialled from your home to speak with her husband. The conversation was completely factitious. What you'll find out once you receive your telephone bill is that her five minute call has cost you £250, a large percentage of which she will receive.

Please be aware these people are playing on your good will. If you have any information or concerns relating to these details, please contact your local police station directly.

Thank you.


12 July 2002

Security Alarm Scam

A security company are currently running a telesales campaign for remote monitored alarms in this area. We have received a number of complaints regarding their 'pressurised' telesales techniques. They are also quoted as having said that Thames Valley Police will not be responding to alarm calls after October - this is not true.
We suggest that if you are contacted by this company you do not disclose any personal information.
If anyone requires advice on or are looking to purchase a security system we suggest you contact a local reputable company.

Thank you.


12 July 2002

Mail Scam

Police are aware of a potential mail scam by a company called International Award Exchange, advising people of an Unpaid Cash Value Prize, stating the recipient is eligible to receive the open & unpaid cash award with amounts of approx. £1,486 to be gained This company claim to identify the recipient of the letter by name and address, requesting their signature on the adjoining Claim Voucher and that it is returned to an address in Vancouver Canada, enclosing £15.00 to cover priority handling of their claim, thus ensuring a speedy return of their prize claim..

Under no circumstances should money be sent. Simply ignore the letter and dispose of it.

If you wish to speak to a Police Officer telephone: PC Bevan on: 01494 736643.

We are aware of numerous similar scams and would like to advise you not to send any money if you can't afford to lose it.Thank you.



12 July 2002

Helping the Young

Do YOU want to continue to make a contribution to your community? Do YOU want to gain experience working with young people? Do YOU want to make a difference with youth crime in your area?
Based in High Wycombe, Bucks Youth at Risk Liaison Group is an organisation that delivers an innovative community programme. Through working in partnership with individuals and organisations they enable alienated and difficult young people to accept responsibility and transform their lives. There is a great opportunity for volunteers to support Bucks Youth at Risk fulfil its task - up to 100 people are needed who can contribute to administration, enrolment, an intensive residential and follow-up programme. If you worry about young people getting involved in crime and wish you could do something about it - you can!
Working with the Bucks Youth at Risk programme in any one of a number of volunteer roles will be challenging, but ultimately very rewarding.
If you are interested in more details about the Bucks Youth at Risk programme call Frances 01494 444351 or e-mail: francesdunne@aol.com
Thank you.


13 June 2002

Burglary Scam

This message contains information regarding a burglary scam which is particularly targeting females. We would therefore ask that you pass these details onto your friends, family and colleagues.
A caller rings through to a business, stating they are from the Post Office and asks for confirmation of the office postcode. The person giving the information is then offered gift vouchers for their co-operation and asked to provide their full home address in order to receive them. A large percentage of the women who have provided their personal details have been burgled, as it is assumed that their homes are empty during office hours. The Post Office have confirmed that they are not conducting any postcode surveys.

Thank you.


29 May 2002

Be Vigilant

With summer on the way, there comes an increased danger of household burglaries where entry is gained through patio doors left open to provide fresh air to the premises. Similarly, vehicles left unattended in car parks, house driveways and rural beauty spots with doors and windows insecure become targets of the opportunist criminal. There is no better invitation to crime than an open window: even when you are in the house or back garden any obvious vehicle and house insecurities will be exploited.
For further information or advice, contact PC Dave Bevan on 01494 736643.

The Handy Van Scheme is operated within the Chiltern and South Bucks areas with the support of HELP THE AGED, Local Authorities and the Police. The scheme provides disabled people and those aged over 60 with Home Security, insulation and minor repairs service. The types of service offered includes fitting mortice locks to doors, window locks, door chains, door viewers and smoke alarms free of charge.
If you would like to make use of this service please contact HELP THE AGED on telephone 01255 473999 for further information.

Although Seer Green is a relatively peaceful village, be aware that no one is safe from mugging, even in this area. Keep alert, especially when you are away from built-up areas.

Thank you.


6 May 2002

2 Scam Alerts

1) Mobile Phones

If you receive a call on your mobile phone from someone calling themselves the "company engineer" saying he is checking the system and asks you to enter either #90 or 09# - END THE CALL IMMEDIATELY without pressing these numbers. A fraudulent company have obtained equipment that can access your SIM CARD, if you follow their instructions they are then able to make calls from your SIM CARD at your expense.

2) Cash Machines

The latest ATM scam initially reported by the Halifax Building Society has now been reported at various ATM's in the Amersham and Chesham area. It involves thieves putting a thin, clear, plastic 'sleeve' into the ATM card slot. When you insert your card the machine is unable to read the strip on the back of your card, therefore asking you to repeat your PIN number. Meanwhile, someone is standing behind you noting your number as you tap it in. When you give up and walk away thinking the machine has swallowed your card, the thieves then remove the 'sleeve' with your card inside and empty your account.
The way to avoid this is to run your finger along the slot before putting your card into the ATM. The 'sleeve' has two tiny prongs which are used to get the card out of the slot, you should be able to feel these, therefore avoiding use of this machine.

Thank you.


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