A householder in the Preston area received a flyer through their door offering tree cutting and hedge trimming services. The flyer claimed to offer a discount for this month only and offered a free quote. The householder contacted the trader by phone, was given a verbal quote but decided not to go ahead. The traders then arrived at the residents house, were very persistent, carried out the work and charged an excessive amount, over £3000, for less than one hours work and for taking the waste away.
Trading Standards advice is to always use local known reputable traders, ask for recommendations from family or friends and get more than one quote. Always check that you have a full address for any trader you deal with, and the price to be paid is obtained in writing before work starts.
Residents in the Fleetwood area are being warned of doorstep sellers using aggressive tactics following several reports of evening callers who claimed to be approved by the council, going door-to-door selling broadband services. Trading Standards advice is to do your own research if you are thinking of getting broadband or changing service providers and not to deal with doorstep callers.
Beware receiving an email which looks like it has come from a close friend. The email asks for a favour, claiming it is their niece or nephews birthday, but they haven't had time to buy a gift and they are going away soon. The email then asks the recipient if they could buy the gift, an iTunes card, getting one for £200 if possible. Once the card has been bought the scammer, still pretending to be a close friend emails asking if the recipient can reveal the barcode on the back of the card and email this number to them.
On closer inspection the email does not come from the close friend but is a scam. If you receive any requests like this, be suspicious, do not respond to the email.
Beware receiving a fake text claiming to be from your bank stating a new payee direct debit has been set up on your account. You will not recognise the new payee name. The text goes on to includes a link to click on if you wish to cancel this new direct debit. This link does not take you to your bank, it is a scam that will try to get personal details from you.
Details of phishing scams can be forwarded to the National Cyber Security Centre at firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact the Trading Standards Service via the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133
Further information about current scams can be found on our Facebook page, Lancashire Trading Standards "Scambuster Stan"