Just a quick note to my fellow small business owners out there to warn /remind of a scam doing the rounds once more.
Yesterday I get a call from a lovely sounding young lady claiming to represent a magazine called Community Aware, which is published by (in this case) Suffolk Police Community Policing Unit. After a bit of chat about the recent high crime levels in my area (news to me, it's very quiet here) we get to the crux of the call.
Would I like to show my support by advertising in this magazine, etc....?
When I point out that money is tight, suddenly she can offer me the medium sized ad for the small ad price....
I agree I would be interested to know more so she lets me know the printers will soon call to confirm my interest.
Within 15mins I get a call (from a mobile number) claiming to be the printer, confirming my 'order' , etc, etc.. however due to printing dealines once I agree, I cannot cancel. (Hmm, against Distance Selling Regulations methinks?)
Today, the info pack arrives on the mat.... poster, sticker, welcome to the club stuff.... all nice and professional in appearance, complete with an invoice for £175. (10% discount if I settle within 7 days) (Distance Selling Regs again - where's the 14 day cooling off period?)
Being ex-Forces I'm already a suspicious git, and so I wander down to the local ploddery to get their take on this.
'Yes sir, it's a well known scam. As long as you haven't signed anything or parted with any money, bung it all in the bin and have no further contact with anyone who contacts you.'
So beware. No UK Police Force cold calls for advertising purposes. Any genuine representative will provide full name, number, job title and will offer to let you call back via openly published Police switchboard numbers.