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LOCAL NEWS UPDATES
Last updated Thursday 17th August 2017

How to contact Leekonline...

 

Fraud Alert: HMRC iTunes voucher fraud

Our colleagues at Action Fraud are warning people once again of fraudsters contacting victims claiming to be from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) that trick people into paying bogus debts and taxes using iTunes gift cards.

  • Fraudsters are contacting the elderly and vulnerable claiming to be from HM Revenue & Customs.
  • Victims are being told they have arrest warrants, outstanding debts or unpaid taxes in their name. 
  • The fraudsters are asking victims to purchase iTunes gift cards as payment. 
  • There are a variety of methods being used including calls, texts and voicemails.

Fraudsters like iTunes gift cards to collect money from victims because they can be easily redeemed and easily sold on. The scammers don't need the physical card to redeem the value and instead get victims to read out the serial code on the back over the phone. 

How to protect yourself: 

  • HMRC will never use texts to tell you about a tax rebate or penalty or ever ask for payment in this way.
  • Telephone numbers and text messages can easily be spoofed. You should never trust the number you see on your telephones display. 
  • If you receive a suspicious cold call, end it immediately.

Please share this information with vulnerable family and friends to ensure they don't fall victim.

If you have been a victim of fraud report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or via their online reporting tool at http://www.actionfraud.police. uk/report_fraud

For more details and the latest fraud alerts visit our website at
https://www.staffordshire. police.uk/article/8201/Latest- Fraud-Alerts

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Fraud Alert: 'Something for you' Postal Delivery Cards

Residents are being warned about ‘something for you' cards arriving through letterboxes designed to look like they have come from Royal Mail.

The cards which lack the Royal Mail logo look almost identical to the ‘something for you' slips that are posted through homes when a delivery can't be made.

To organise a redelivery the cards urge recipients to call a 0208 number, which is not registered to Royal Mail. After ringing the number the automated message asks for your details and consignment number.

Customers should check delivery cards very carefully to ensure they are geniune and remain vigilant.  Although this card is similar to the Royal Mail card the Royal Mail logo is crucially missing.

Customers should consider whether they are expecting delivery.  If in doubt, do not call the number provided, give your details or personal information and get in touch with Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 .

For the latest fraud alerts, information and advice visit
https://www.staffordshire. police.uk/article/8201/Latest- Fraud-Alerts

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Theft at cemetery

There has been a recent report of a theft at New Leek Cemetery on Buxton Road.

Over the weekend of the 12th and 13th of August someone has entered the cemetery and has taken flowers and decorations from a headstone.

If anyone has seen anything please contact Staffordshire Police on 101 Quoting serial 0668 of 14/08/2017.

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Suspicious Van

We have been made aware of a suspicious red van visiting locations around the Staffordshire Moorlands. Officers have caught up with this vehicle, checks have been done and this is a legitimate person selling items from the rear of their vehicle.

We would like to thank members of the public for their observations and calls into police.

We would like to remind you that if you do purchase any items from the rear of a vehicle they will not come with a warranty, maybe a imitation or the item could be stolen.

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Funding available to community groups in Staffordshire Moorlands

The latest round of People Power funding in now open and Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis is inviting groups in Cheadle, Leek and Biddulph to bid for money to make their communities safer.

As part of his commitment to local communities, the PCC is providing £300,000 in 2017/18 through the fund in the form of grants of between £100 and £3,000. The window for the latest round of applications for People Power Funding closes on 14 September.

Great ideas for community safety solutions come from local people. The People Power Fund is supporting locally-driven community safety activities throughout Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent and empowers local people to find solutions to community safety problems.

Since 2014 over 330 local projects across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent have received People Power Funding. These range from groups providing positive activities for young people, additional security measures and mentoring programmes.

Mr Ellis said: “The People Power Fund is all about local ideas to sort out local issues like anti-social behaviour. If you've got a good idea, the People Power Fund may be able to help you achieve it.

“If you're a community group with good ideas to cut crime or make your area safer go to the website now to find out more – it's easy and simple to apply”

The People Power Fund is one part of the PCC's Community Funding for 2017/18. 

The Commissioner's Proceeds of Crime Fund is seeing 100 per cent of funding received by Staffordshire Police going back into local communities, through grants of between £3,000 and £15,000. It is made up of money seized from criminals.

M ore details, including guidance and application forms are available at www.staffordshire-pcc.gov.uk/ fund

The Staffordshire Safer Roads Partnership is also providing £200,000 over the next 2 years in the form of the Road Safety Grant Fund. This fund aims to improve road safety, increase public confidence in the safety of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent's roads and support communities to take local responsibility.

More information on this fund can be found at www.staffssaferroads.co.uk/my- community/road-safety-grant- fund

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Advice: Be Aware - Bogus Officials/Distraction Burglaries

We are urging residents, particularly the elderly and vulnerable, to be on their guard as we continue to receive reports of bogus officials and distraction burglaries across the County.

We are reminding residents to never allow any unsolicited visitors into their home, however convincing they may sound.  Always check the identity of callers first and, if you are unsure, or suspicious about their intent, please contact us immediately on 101 or 999 in an emergency.

Also known as distraction burglars, bogus callers trick their way into people's homes to steal money and valuables. They make themselves seem genuine and plausible while your attention is elsewhere.

Examples of this would include bogus officials, people claiming to come from the council, water-board or tradesmen/workmen claiming that the property or garden needs essential/urgent maintenance.

They often work in pairs; one to keep you talking at the front door while the other tries to access your house from a back door or window. Some might even plead for help, such as asking for a glass of water.

Remember - it's your home and you can say 'no' and ask them to leave.

These types of criminals often target the elderly and vulnerable so we ask that you also remind your relatives, friends and neighbours of the need to be wary of these types of callers.

We take this type of crime very seriously and are working hard to catch these criminals, which is why it is important that anyone with any information is asked to contact us on 101.

Further information support and guidance can be found on our website
https://www.staffordshire. police.uk/article/2321/Bogus- Officials

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Fraud Alert: Santander Invoice Phishing Email

We have been made ware of a phishing email claiming to include an invoice from Santander bank being used in Staffordshire to try and gain access to funds.

Online security experts are warning computer users to be very wary of emails that claim to contain invoices, even if they appear to be from a trusted source.

Self-employed, freelance and contract workers are particularly vulnerable because they may receive invoices regularly from a number of sources.

Cyber criminals often try to mimic the email address of a legitimate supplier or a colleague or friend in a bid to trick the recipient into thinking the invoice is genuine.

Financial Fraud Action UK's top tips:

Be on the lookout for unexpected invoices or unusual payment requests.

Avoid enabling any macros on an untrusted document.

If you're suspicious – don't reply to the email but instead call your supplier on the number that you have on file
to check the authenticity of the invoice.

Ensure you have the latest anti-virus and security updates installed on your computer and consider using
high-level macro security settings in software applications.

Ensure strong firewalls are in place to help detect malware and prevent data leaving the network
without permission.

Consider using a separate computer dedicated to making online payments to minimise security risks.

If you have been a victim of fraud you can report this to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040

For the latest fraud alerts visit the force website at https://www.staffordshire. police.uk/article/8201/Latest- Fraud-Alerts

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Farmwatch message

Please be aware that we have had a number of thefts reported over night in the Longnor and Alstonefield area - theft from vehicle and also a garage break in. Call 101 with any suspicious activity or 999 if you believe a theft is in progress. please make sure your property is secure...

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Working in Partnership: Healthwatch - Your Views

We are continuously working with our partners to ensure that local residents live safe, healthy and prosperous lives.  

Health and care issues can be part of the conditions, causes and consequences of crime and disorder.

Staffordshire has a Health and Care service called ‘Healthwatch' to help residents get the local health and care services they need.

The service is being recommissioned from 1st April 2018 and it would helpful if you gave your views on what the service should provide.

Please click on the link below to find out more about ‘Healthwatch' and have your say.

https://www.staffordshire. gov.uk/yourcouncil/ consultationandfeedback/ consultationdetails.aspx? consultationid=health-and- care-consultation-your-local- healthwatc&consultationdeptid= health-and-care

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Alert: Publication Review Fraud

We are urging landlords and business owners to be on their guard following two reports of a male trying to obtain payment for a beer review publication.

The male entered public houses in Newcastle and Leek purporting to be from a beer review magazine and stated he needed payment for the publication of a review.  Unfortunately monies were handed over in one incident.

We are currently investigating the incidents and anyone with any information is asked to contact us on 101 quoting incident number 295 of 3rd August.

We would urge landlords and business owners to never hand over monies or make payments without verifying the transaction first.

If you suspect you have been a victim of fraud please contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 .

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

SECURITY OF PLANT & FARM MACHINERY

Please can all owners of any farm or plant manchinery ensure that all machines such as JCB, KUBOTA, BOBCAT, MANITOU, CAT, TELEHANDLERS, FORKLIFTS & TRACTORS are locked away in secure compounds and security is increased.  Please report any suspicous activity ( no matter how small) to Staffordshire Police on 101, or in case of an emergency dial 999.

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Advice: Car Key Burglaries

We are reminding residents to be on their guard and to review home and vehicle security following a number of burglaries where offenders have targeted the property with a view to stealing the keys and vehicle at the property.

We would urge residents to ensure their property is secure at all times, including all doors and windows and that items of value and keys are stored away out of view.

Offenders often target properties with high value/high performance vehicles on the driveway however this is not always the case! If keys are visible through windows and doors then offenders will break in; take the keys and make off in the vehicle.

Let's not make it easy for them!

If you have any information which could assist us with our enquiries, please contact us on 101 or anonymously via crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 .

For more home and vehicle security advice and information please visit the force website at www.staffordshire.police.uk/ crimeprevention .

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Horseboxes, Trailers & Caravans

As with other equipment photograph your horsebox/trailer. Ensure it is immobilised when parked, but that it can be brought into use quickly in the event of an emergency. Use wheel clamps, hitch locks, car alarms or immobilisers.

Consider having your trailer security marked with you post code. Personalise your vehicle(s). Park them where you can see them, preferably in an area which is lit up at night or has intruder security lighting. Thefts of horseboxes, trailers and caravans have presented more of a problem over the past few years but with modern security devices fitted they are certainly a lot harder for the thief to steal.

1 Wheel clamp

2 Hitchlock with chain

3 Car Alarm

4 Security marking

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Advice: Car Key Burglaries

We are reminding residents to be on their guard and to review home and vehicle security following an increase in the number of burglaries where offenders have targeted the property with a view to stealing the keys and vehicle at the property.

We would urge residents to ensure their property is secure at all times, including all doors and windows and that items of value and keys are stored away out of view.

Offenders often target properties with high value/high performance vehicles on the driveway however this is not always the case! If keys are visible through windows and doors then offenders will break in; take the keys and make off in the vehicle.

Let's not make it easy for them!

If you have any information which could assist us with our enquiries, please contact us on 101 or anonymously via crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 .

For more home and vehicle security advice and information please visit the force website at www.staffordshire.police.uk/ crimeprevention .

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Counter Terror Advice for Businesses

Please find attached a document which provides links to further information and advice for businesses. 

Download Associated Documents
Documents accompanying this message are linked below. Click to download and open a file which use the popular PDF format. If you experience problems downloading or viewing a file please visit this help page .

Police Contact Advice:

Telephone 999 in an emergency where there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress.
Telephone 101 for non-emergencies where police attendance is required, to report a crime or to report any other incidents. Calls to 101 have a fixed cost of 15p per call.
If you are calling about the above, please tell us that you are responding to a message from Staffordshire Smart Alert

Road safety reminder for young cyclists

As summer approaches and more people are out on the roads, we're issuing a timely reminder to cyclists on how to stay safe and cycle responsibly.

We've received a number of calls from parents and local residents recently regarding large groups of young cyclists riding their bikes in an anti-social manner on pavements and highways, and engaging in dangerous activities.

PCSO Jordan Hayes, who polices the Wilnecote and Trinity area of Tamworth, said, “We don't want to discourage young people from riding their bikes, but we do want to make parents aware of the dangers of such reckless activities and to ensure the safety of their children and other road users.

“As a cyclist, you still need to follow the Highway Code including observing ‘stop' and ‘give way' signs and traffic lights and remembering to wear the appropriate protective and reflective biking gear. But ultimately, ride positively, be sensible and stay safe.”

For more information on this subject please visit www.staffordshire.police.uk/ cyclists


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