For crime prevention advice for outbuildings, garages and sheds (August 2017)

Police Warn of New Scam Telephone Calls

Police in Warwickshire and West Mercia are warning members of the public to be alert to potential hoax calls pretending to be from telephone or computer companies.

There have been a few reports involving hoax phone calls claiming to be employees from either BT or TalkTalk to inform potential victims that they have a virus on their computers, or they are due a refund.

Incidents have been reported in the Harbury and Alcester areas in Warwickshire and Malvern, Worcestershire over the past week.

Incident 150-18-06-16

An elderly person in her 80s received a call from Talk-Talk who advised her that they needed to download some software on to her computer and obtained their personal information. They were on the phone for approximately for an hour and a half and advised her that she was owed a refund and this is why they needed their bank details.

Incident 219-22-06-16

A call from someone claiming to be from Talk-Talk accessed the victim’s laptop as they claimed the victim was owed £200. The victim realised later on and the offenders had attempted to take money from the victim’s bank accounts, however the bank has blocked money transfer.

Incident 0243S 220616

A call from someone claiming to be from BT accessed the victim’s laptop as they claimed the victim had multiple hacks on the account and requested they transfer £750 to help ambush the hackers. The victim has realised the report was false and has not transferred money
and contacted the police.

Police warn that the scammers will make repeated attempts to gain access to computers by asking potential victims to input codes to target ‘infected’ files, or may request account details.

How to protect yourself:

  • Do not allow remote access to your computer.
  • Hang up the phone when you identify that the call is uninvited.
  • Never divulge passwords or pin numbers.
  • BT, Microsoft, other computer companies or someone on their behalf will never call you.
  • TalkTalk have also said they will NEVER
  • Ask for your bank details to process a refund. If you are ever due a refund from them, they would only be able to process this if your bank details are already registered on their systems.
  • Call you and ask you to download software onto your computer, unless you have previously contacted TalkTalk, discussed and agreed a call back for this to take place.
  • Send you emails asking you to provide your full password. They will only ever ask for two digits from it to protect your security.
  • It is also a good idea to contact the company who the fraudulent caller claims to be from, especially if this is a bank
  • .

Police urge anyone who receives similar calls to dial 101 and report them.

A few “tips” . . .

“Watch your box” – by which I mean, make sure that thieves can’t “fish” for keys from your hall table through the letter box!

Check that your door and window locks are appropriate.

Mark your property with Smartwater.

Lock up your sheds and garages.

Keep windows shut.

Have lights that come on automatically at night in the house if you are away.

Keep a list and photographic record of your valuables.

Get a small wall/under floor safe!

Consider a burglar alarm.

Consult the experts – the first port of call is the Crime Prevention Officer for your area.

Along with the usual “garden” thefts we experience in the Summer months, it seems that the theft of diesel is getting popular.

Recently there was an attempt to siphon diesel from a lorry parked in Astley – take care.

It is now easier for you to contact West Mercia Police.

You can dial 101 to report non-emergencies.

The three-digit number is to be used when reporting incidents which do not require an urgent response.

It costs 15 pence to call 101 – no matter what time of the day you call or how long you stay on the phone for – and it is available 24 hours a day.

Head of Operational Support Command, Chief Superintendent Trevor Albutt said: “We hope that giving the public this memorable number will make it easier for people to report crime and also ease the pressure on the 999 system. Every day, we receive a number of inappropriate calls on 999 which stop or delay people with real emergencies getting through to us. West Mercia Police aims to provide the highest levels of customer service and we hope that adopting 101 will allow us to better prioritise the most urgent calls for help.”

Examples of where 101 should be dialled instead of 999 include:
If your car has been stolen;
If your property has been damaged;
Where you suspect drug use or dealing;
If you want to report a minor traffic collision.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired, you can access the service via textphone on 18001 101.

Ch Supt Albutt added: “This new number is already being used by several police forces, and all 43 Chief Constables across England and Wales have agreed to introduce 101 as the national police non-emergency number. 101 is much easier to remember than the existing non-emergency number and the single rate for every call means people will know exactly how much it costs to contact us. Our current number – 0300 333 3000 – will continue to operate as a general switchboard number which should be used to speak to a particular person or department, for example, if you want to speak to your Local Policing Team.”

In an emergency, always call 999 if there is a crime in progress, if someone suspected of a crime is nearby, when there is danger to life or when violence is being used or threatened.

To find out more about 101 and when to use it visit

Adrian Symonds
Community Volunteers Co-ordinator
Worcestershire and Herefordshire
West Mercia Police

The Neighbourhood Watch scheme is working well but to be even more successful, it requires all of us to be involved. If you are not a member and would like to be involved, then please contact the neighbourhood watch co-ordinator.

There is concern that very few properties in Dunley are registered. Please remember there are many advantages to membership visit the “Neighbourhood Watch” page of our web site.