Shut Out Scammers campaign

South Lanarkshire Council is lending its voice to the Shut out Scammers campaign.

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The council is backing Trading Standards and Police Scotland campaign.

Led by Trading Standards Scotland and Police Scotland and running until the end of May, the campaign has been designed to combat a rise in doorstep scams linked to the cost of living crisis.

It specifically aims to empower consumers to recognise and deal with issues such as the mis-selling of energy efficiency measures, doorstep crime and rogue trading.

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Fraudsters are increasingly adapting their methods to take advantage of consumer anxieties around the cost of living crisis.

This has led to an increase in complaints by Scottish consumers about cold calls and scams relating to energy efficiency products such as boilers or roof insulation, based on government ‘discounts’ or grants.

Detective Superintendent Dave Ferry, depute chair of Police Scotland’s acquisitive crime tactical board, said: “Typically, door-step criminals look to fraudulently represent tradespeople so that they can gain access to your home where they look to steal items of value, which can include your personal information that they can then use for financial gain.

“The Shut out Scammers campaign aims to bring scams to public attention so communities are informed and feel empowered to question cold-callers and turn away anyone whose identity they do not feel is genuine.”

Consumers in South Lanarkshire can find local companies who have been vetted and approved by Trading Standards on the Buy with Confidence website. The council was the first local authority in Scotland to sign up for the scheme in 2012.

David Booth, executive director of community and enterprise resources, said: “It’s more important than ever to protect consumers from scammers and rogue traders who are changing how they do things to fit the current circumstances.

“That’s why we are so keen to back this campaign and shine a light on the most common methods and scams being used. We want consumers to reject cold callers and instead seek local traders who have been vetted and have made a commitment to treat customers fairly.”

Scams can be reported to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or visit https://advice.scot.