Crime Prevention - Scams
Westgate-on-Sea Town Council
In the past few weeks there have been a small number of potential scams reported to Kent Police in Birchington and Westgate on Sea, and we are therefore requesting that you are vigilant of any similar behaviour to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of crime. The methods used on these occasions reported to Kent Police have been outlined below:
A door to door sales person claiming to be ex-military personnel and selling household items on behalf of a veterans charity. This is not a typical method used by charities to raise donations or support military personnel, but can be used by criminals to identify vulnerable persons, ascertain if residential properties are empty, and possibly gain an opportunity to steal personal possessions situated near to the entrance door. Always challenge anyone claiming to from a charity including asking for visual identification, confirm the registered charity number, ask for a contact number and call them to verify the identity of the person undertaking work on their behalf.
A Facebook sale transaction where an electric fireplace was being sold. The person buying the item asked the seller to pay 'Fed Ex Transport Fees' in advance. This is an uncommon transaction request and was likely fraudulent. You can report such matters to Facebook along with the account holder details, and they can decide to suspend the account.
People receiving messages to their mobile telephone claiming to be from a relative; they will usually refer to the recipient as 'Mum' or 'Dad'. They will claim to have changed their telephone number and this will then likely trigger a conversation where they make a request for money. If any contacts claim to have changed their telephone number in a generic text message like this, we encourage you to call them in person and validate the new number. Never send money to other persons simply based on a text message as it will likely be fraudulent.
The Kent Police website has a large collection of crime prevention material which can be accessed at the following link: Crime prevention advice | Kent Police.
Over the next two days I will also be undertaking foot patrol in Westgate on Sea and Birchington so would be more than happy to provide some crime prevention advice in person.
Chloe Wheatley (Interim Town Clerk)
- 01843 836182
- 01843 836182