Sunday, 28 November 2021

Cash machine scam

A local resident used the cash machine outside the Tesco express in welling on Thursday (25th Nov 2021) and the card got stuck in the machine. By the time the resident got home to report it about 45 minutes scammers had got the card out and got to Bexleyheath and withdrew £2400 from 3 machines.

So if your card jams in a machine don’t leave that spot call your bank from there and stop your card.

On ATM withdrawals you can set limits for Barclays but not for self service. You can also set a spend limit on card via the bank app and can stop card straight away through the app as well.

Cashpoint cons: how to spot a dodgy ATM


Avoid being scammed when using an ATM machine [Action Fraud 16-04-2016]

Thursday, 25 November 2021

Whatsapp Scam Alert


Whatsapp Scam Alert

A convincing WhatsApp scam where criminals pose as a friend or family member in need has cost users almost £50,000 in three months.

A Whatsapp scam doing the rounds - a random number will message purporting to be a family member saying they are in financial trouble and to help by transferring money to an account.  It goes something like this:

Mum?
Mum?
My phone is broken so am on a new number - can you do me a favour, my internet banking is down and I need to pay an urgent bill, can you transfer some money to this account please XXXXXXXX and i'll send it back first thing tomorrow.

It's as simple as that.  Don't fall foul to these scammers, always check with family members via another means before sending money anywhere!  And remember your bank will never contact you asking you to confirm your account numbers.

Action Fraud [24-11-2021]

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Tips to prevent car thefts on the rise

Car Steering Wheel Lock

The borough has seen lots of cars being stolen and one of the good old fashioned ways to prevent this theft is to fit a steering wheel lock as shown in the image.

If you have keyless entry or smart key,  a Faraday pouch which has a RFID blocker as an anti-theft protection bag is also a great idea as shown in the image below.

Faraday pouch which has a RFID blocker

The above are easily available online (example Amazon - click on the caption links in the images shown above), however it is a good idea to shop around for the particular size and build quality to suit your car needs.

Make sure you lock your cars even on your drive, if you have auto-locking fobs do not leave them close to the front of your properties as they can be cloned. (this has happened to quite a few of Bexleys residents). Using the above measures makes it harder to have your car being stolen.

If you have a catalytic converter, check with your manufacturer on advice to prevent its theft.

Type in 'car theft' in the search box on this blog to find further help and advice on this subject.


 

Tuesday, 23 November 2021

15M Lost To Online Shopping Scams Last Christmas

New data from Action Fraud, the national reporting centre for fraud and cyber crime, reveals that 28,049 shoppers were conned out of their money when shopping online over the Christmas period last year – an increase of almost two thirds (61 per cent) when compared to the same period in the previous year.

Ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Action Fraud is warning the public to take extra care when shopping online as reports of online shopping fraud have continued to surge. Here are some simple tips to help you and your family enjoy a secure online shopping experience this festive season.Where to shopBuying from an online store you haven’t used before? Carry out some research first, or ask a friend or family member if they’ve used the site and about their experiences before completing the purchase.Your informationOnly create an account if necessary or to save you effort if you’re going to use that site a lot in the future. Be cautious if the website asks you for details that are not required for your purchase, such as your mother’s maiden name or the name of your primary school.Payment methodWhen it's time to pay for your items, check there's a 'closed padlock' icon in the browser's address bar. Use a credit card when shopping online, if you have one. Most major credit card providers protect online purchases.PhishingSome of the messages you receive about amazing offers may contain links to fake websites. If you’re unsure about a link, don’t use the it – go separately to the website. Report suspicious emails you receive by forwarding them to: report@phishing.gov.uk. Report suspicious text messages by forwarding them to: 7726.Email accounts:Make sure that your really important accounts (such as your email account or online shopping accounts) are protected by strong passwords that you don't use anywhere else.Need help changing your email account password? You can use these links to find step by step instructions: GmailYahoo! MailOutlookBTAOL MailIf things go wrongIf you've lost money to an online shopping scam, tell your bank and report it as a crime to Action Fraud (for England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or Police Scotland (for Scotland). By doing this, you'll be helping to prevent others becoming victims of cyber crime.For more of the government’s latest advice on how to stay secure online, visit the Cyber Aware website: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware

Top tips to shop online securely this Christmas

Online shopping scams cost shoppers £15.4 million over the Christmas period last year.

New data from Action Fraud, the national reporting centre for fraud and cyber crime, reveals that 28,049 shoppers were conned out of their money when shopping online over the Christmas period last year – an increase of almost two thirds (61 per cent) when compared to the same period in the previous year.

Ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Action Fraud is warning the public to take extra care when shopping online as reports of online shopping fraud have continued to surge. Here are some simple tips to help you and your family enjoy a secure online shopping experience this festive season. 

Where to shop

Buying from an online store you haven’t used before? Carry out some research first, or ask a friend or family member if they’ve used the site and about their experiences before completing the purchase.

Your information

Only create an account if necessary or to save you effort if you’re going to use that site a lot in the future. Be cautious if the website asks you for details that are not required for your purchase, such as your mother’s maiden name or the name of your primary school.

Payment method

When it's time to pay for your items, check there's a 'closed padlock' icon in the browser's address bar. Use a credit card when shopping online, if you have one. Most major credit card providers protect online purchases.

Phishing

Some of the messages you receive about amazing offers may contain links to fake websites. If you’re unsure about a link, don’t use the it – go separately to the website. Report suspicious emails you receive by forwarding them to: report@phishing.gov.uk. Report suspicious text messages by forwarding them to: 7726.

Email accounts:

Make sure that your really important accounts (such as your email account or online shopping accounts) are protected by strong passwords that you don't use anywhere else.

Need help changing your email account password? You can use these links to find step by step instructions: GmailYahoo! MailOutlookBTAOL Mail

If things go wrong

If you've lost money to an online shopping scam, tell your bank and report it as a crime to Action Fraud (for England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or Police Scotland (for Scotland). By doing this, you'll be helping to prevent others becoming victims of cyber crime.

For more of the government’s latest advice on how to stay secure online, visit the Cyber Aware website: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware 

Monday, 22 November 2021

Lottery Fraud Alert from NFIA



Lottery Frauds Alert

NFIA alert on Lottery Frauds

Inside the mind of the online scammer

Shared on social media by ‘The Conversation.’

https://theconversation.com/inside-the-mind-of-the-online-scammer-127471

When Dame Helen Mirren revealed she had been the victim of a humiliating” scam on the press junket for her latest movie (in which, coincidentally, she also plays the victim of a hoax), it highlighted how everyone needs to be on their guard against fraudsters. Even members of the royal family are not immune, as was illustrated when Prince Charles was dragged into a major counterfeit art scandal. But what motives scammers, other than greed? I believe the answer can be gleaned by investigating why humans lie in the first place.

Online fraudsters carry out a sophisticated and well-planned array of deceiving strategies to con people. These include romance scams in which the victim is enticed to contribute cash to foster a fake romantic relationship, fraudulent lotteries, prize draws, sweepstake games and auction sites. Substantial winnings are offered if the victim can send in some cash.

The fraudsters are constantly building better mousetraps in order to lure in increasingly sophisticated mice. For example, scams are being personalised to the victim by including references to familiar people or by targeting the victim’s occupation.

What’s behind the deception?  Scams are carried out using almost untraceable methods, so the criminals are often unknown, despite concerted efforts by law enforcement to identify and prosecute them. But the knowledge from several disciplines (ethology, social psychology and criminology) can help us to understand them.

Disinformation is dangerous. We fight it with facts and expertise.

Deception to ensure survival:  Ethologists study animal behaviour. They have observed that species, including humans, have developed a complex means of deceiving their prey in order to ensure their survival. For example, ethologists have identified complex forms of deceptions in other species, such as the jumping spider, which uses behavioural and chemical mimicry. This allows them to coexist with ants and feed on them. This is regarded as comparable to humans engaging in embezzlement by which they use their privileged access to resources and reputation for illegally extracting finances from other people.

Altruistic lies?  Social psychologists have found that when humans lie for altruistic purposes or advancement of the group, the lie is often praised rather than denigrated. For example, even young children (aged between five and seven) show a willingness to tell “white lies” in order to make others feel better. Meanwhile other research shows that adults perceive lying that benefits others (because sometimes the truth hurts) as more “ethical” than honest statements.

Typical and serious lies:  Social psychological research shows that lying is part of normal life. Frequently, people tell everyday lies that are rather benign. Most of these lies are self-serving, but many are designed to benefit others.  People most often tell “serious lies” to their closest relationship partners. They tell serious lies in order to avoid punishment, protect themselves from confrontation, appear a highly desirable person, to protect others and also to hurt their partner. Common serious lies tend to involve affairs and taking money from others without their knowledge.

Liars, fraudsters, and corruption:  Frauds represent a complex array of deceptive behaviour that originates in species and arises, in part, from some of the typical motivations for deception. It is, of course, a criminal activity that is well understood by criminologists. Most criminals are typically male and have parents with criminal records, delinquent peer friends, arrests at a young age and come from poor areas with higher crime rates.

Today’s most common online scams are often carried out by people from poor countries.

These countries and their government officials are generally regarded as corrupt by international corruption indexes. Such corruption conveys the message that deception is a desirable strategy. Poverty combined with high corruption contributes to a heightened motivation to deceive others for survival. The criminals in question tend to have traits of psychopathic and antisocial personality disorders. Research has investigated illegal downloading and hacking in adolescents from 30 countries. It was found that “cyber deviance” was mostly carried out by males and by people who experienced “school disorganisation” (stealing and vandalism) and “neighbourhood disorganisation” (having untrustworthy or criminal neighbours).  These “cyber deviants” tend to have elevated cognitive ability and, of course, have access to computers and technology. This type of fraud is often well planned, and the fraudsters employ a range of deceptive tactics.

Fraud, Counterfeit and pirated goods from NCA

Fraud:  Fraud, is the most commonly experienced crime in the UK. Fraud costs the UK many billions of pounds every year. The impact of fraud and related offences such as market abuse and counterfeiting, can be devastating, ranging from unaffordable personal losses suffered by vulnerable victims to impacting the ability of organisations to stay in business. 

The threat from fraud:  Data breaches continue to be a key enabler of fraud. Personal and financial information obtained in a breach can be used to commit frauds affecting individuals, the private and public sectors alike. By harvesting personal and financial information through data breaches, criminals, are able to commit fraud and damage people, businesses, and services.

The most robust figures currently available from the Crime Survey of England and Wales reveal there were 3.4 million incidents of fraud in 2016-17. However, we think that fewer than 20 per cent of incidents of fraud, are actually reported so the true figure may be much higher. This means that the scale of fraud is very significant, but that under-reporting also hampers our understanding of the threat.

Much of the proceeds will be laundered within the UK or moved overseas. To launder the proceeds of fraud, organised crime groups often use ‘mule networks,’with bank accounts owned by witting and unwitting members of the public being used to obscure the source and nature of the funds.

Victims of fraud range across vulnerable individuals, major corporations, smaller businesses, as well as the public sector. The 2017 Annual Fraud Indicator estimates fraud losses to the UK at around £190 billion every year, with the private sector hit hardest losing around £140 billion. The public sector may be losing more than £40 billion and individuals around £7 billion. Businesses and high-net-worth individuals are now also being increasingly targeted due to their larger financial transactions and the greater potential profits for fraudsters. Aside from the financial costs, being a victim of fraud can cause serious reputational damage for businesses. Concern about adverse publicity probably contributes to under-reporting.

Fraud against individuals is typically targeted at elderly and other vulnerable people, for whom the consequences can often be devastating – psychologically as well as financially.

Fraud is increasingly being committed online. Where previously a fraud may have been committed by phone, post or in person, online access enables fraudsters to exploit victims remotely, often from another country. Some investment frauds, and most computer software service fraud, are known to be perpetrated from overseas.

Crime groups attack the UK public sector and government departments, such as the NHS, and billions are estimated to be lost to tax and benefit fraud each year. 

Counterfeit and pirated goods:  Counterfeit or pirated goods results in lost profits and taxes, and put consumers at risk from poor quality, unsafe goods. Counterfeiting is attractive to organised criminals because it brings high financial return from low investment.

The market for counterfeit currency has changed over the last ten years. High quality counterfeit notes can be produced very quickly by skilled printers using traditional offset lithographic methods. However, organised crime groups are also producing digitally printed fakes, using the latest technology and laser or inkjet printing techniques. Offset lithographic printing remains the more serious threat; notes are of a high quality and can be produced quickly. UK crime groups continue to counterfeit £20 notes, but the problem has reduced with the new £1 coins and the polymer £5 and £10 notes, which have increased security features. 

Identity theft:  Identity theft occurs when criminals access enough personal information about an individual to commit fraud. They use various techniques to steal these details, from outright theft and social engineering to harvesting data through cybercrime. With this information, criminals can impersonate the victim in order to access bank accounts, fraudulently claim benefits or obtain genuine documents in the victim’s name. Criminals are increasingly stealing identity data online, for example persuading individuals to disclose personal details and passwords through ‘phishing’ emails, and then trading the data.

Our response to fraud:  We work with partners from across the public, private and third sectors to pursue serious and organised fraudsters, make individuals and businesses more resilient to fraud and other economic crimes, and, wherever possible, to return funds to victims. Our key partners include the Serious Fraud Office, City of London Police (lead police force for fraud), Metropolitan Police Service, Financial Conduct Authority, and the National Cyber Security Centre.The UK National Central Office for the Suppression of Counterfeit Currency and Protected Coins (UKNCO) provides advice and support to UK and international law enforcement about counterfeit currency.

What you can do to help:  If you have been a victim of fraud, including fraudulent emails, do not open any attachments or click any links. Report all incidents of fraud to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and cyber crime reporting centre, via their website or contact 0300 123 2040. In an emergency, call 999.It is important to protect details of your identity to prevent becoming a victim of identity theft. For further fraud prevention advice please visit Take Five, Cyber Aware and Action Fraud.Impersonation of NCA officers:  Criminals may pretend to be from a legitimate organisation, in order to deceive. This includes the impersonation of NCA officers. If you’re in any doubt as to the identity of one of our officers please

call our Control Centre on 0370 496 7622

(available 24/7)

or go to this website:

https://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/what-we-do/crime-threats/fraud-and-economic-crime

Enable two-factor authentication (2FA)

Enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) is the single most important thing you can do to improve the security of your online accounts.

What is 2FA?Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a way of strengthening the login security of your online accounts. It's similar to how an ATM works. You need both your debit card (first factor) and your PIN (second factor) to get access your account and withdraw cash. The main objective is better security. If your card is stolen, they still need your PIN. If your PIN is stolen, they still need your card.Enabling 2FA will help to stop hackers from getting into your accounts, even if they have your password.How do I enable 2FA on my accounts?Here are links you can use to enable 2FA on some of the most popular online services and apps:
For more of the government’s latest advice on how to stay secure online, visit the Cyber Aware website: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware

Sunday, 21 November 2021

Beware:New COVID Digital Passport phishing scam text

 

Digital passport phishing scam from 07306895593

Dangerous url as shown and blocked


Dangerous url

Reported to 7726 as shown in first image [click any image to view enlarged]

For further information visit https://bexleywatch.blogspot.com/search/label/COVID-19

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Cycle Security – New bike for Christmas?

Cycle security is always an issue with many being stolen from locations including the town centre, residential areas, and educational establishments. Commonly cycles are not secured properly, don’t make it easy for thieves: - 

1. Double lock it - using two locks slows thieves down and makes your bike less of a target. Use two quality locks, at least one of which is a D-lock. Thieves are less likely to carry multiple tools, so use two different types of lock if possible.

2. Lock the lot - lock the frame and both wheels to a secure cycle stand.

3. Secure it - secure your bike as close to the stand as possible to give any thieves little or no room to manoeuvre. 

4. Take removable parts with you - Take parts that are easy to remove with you, such as wheels, lights, baskets, or the saddle. Or use locking skewers or nuts which can increase security by securing the bike's components to the frame permanently. 

5. Park securely - Lock your bike at recognised secure cycle parking. It should be well lit, overlooked and covered by CCTV.

Where do they go? Number of places: - locally, in a container abroad, to another part of the country, stored in premises for later sale or sold as either a cycle or cycle parts via the internet, or third parties.

Look for a "Sold Secure" certified chain and padlock

By taking some appropriate precautions and using good quality security products, and using them well, should help you to keep your property safe. Use the best security you can afford. Don't secure a £2,000 bicycle with a £10-£20 lock! As a guide look to spend 10-15% of the value of the item on its security. Look for a “Sold Secure” certified chain and padlock or “D – Lock” preferably gold rated but certainly not below silver.

Make a note of the frame number, security mark the cycle, there are a number of different methods available such as www.datatag.co.uk , www.bikeregister.com, (others are available and can be found on the Secured by Design website below) and you can register property including cycles free of charge at www.immobilise.com. Take a photograph of the cycle and any areas of damage or marks of identification, some insurance companies may require one with the owner in the picture with it.

Don’t forget at home: 

1) don’t leave garage doors open for long periods showing your expensive cycle and other property, 

2) consider a “Ground anchor” or “Shed shackle” within your shed or garage to secure your cycle to,

3) look at your shed or garages security and ensure you have good locks and that the hinges are protected, 

4) consider a shed alarm.

Check with your insurance company to see what security standards they require for your insurance cover to be valid.

Monday, 15 November 2021

Useful video on Bexley Watch blog

How to navigate, subscribe, share posts, Contact us, find useful information or report etc on Bexley Watch blog.

The new share icons appear in 'incognito' mode on some browsers.



Thursday, 11 November 2021

'Together South' programme

Together South London Timetable - JOSHUA TIMETABLE

Together South_London General Poster_Joshua Contact

Groundwork South, are working to help refugees and non-EU migrants thrive in Bexley through our holistic 'Together South' programme, which focuses on free cultural integration sessions, English classes, and preparation for work.

For additional info about Together South, please check out our website https://www.groundwork.org.uk/projects/together/

Wednesday, 10 November 2021

23M People Used 123456 As A Password

Whether it’s your Facebook, Amazon, or Netflix account, the explosion in popularity of online apps and services means more and more of us have to remember an increasingly long list of passwords.

Unfortunately, some of us cope with this challenge by resorting to practices that leave our data, devices and money at risk - by using the same password across multiple accounts, or by creating simple passwords that could easily be guessed by hackers. Bad password practice is more prevalent than you might think - the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre carried out analysis of passwords leaked in data breaches and found that more than 23 million users worldwide used 123456 as a password. You can read more about it here: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/news/most-hacked-passwords-revealed-as-uk-cyber-survey-exposes-gaps-in-online-securityHere are some top tips that will make your life easier and your online accounts more secure:1: Creating memorable passwordsA good way to create strong, memorable passwords is by using 3 random words. But remember, don’t use words that can be guessed (like your pet’s name). You can include numbers and symbols if you need to. For example, “RedPantsTree4!”2: Saving passwords in your browserSaving your password in your browser means letting your web browser (such as Chrome, Safari or Edge) remember your password for you.This can help:
  • make sure you do not lose or forget your passwords
  • protect you against some cyber crime, such as fake websites
It is safer than using weak passwords, or using the same password in more than one place.Here are some useful links on how you can start saving passwords in your browser: Google ChromeMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxSafari.3: Email account passwordsIf a hacker gets into your email account, they could:
  • reset your other online account passwords
  • access personal information you have saved about yourself or your business
Your email password should be strong and different to all your other passwords. This will make it harder to crack or guess.Need help changing your email account password? You can use these links to find step by step instructions: GmailYahoo! MailOutlookBTAOL Mail.For more of the government’s latest advice on how to stay secure online, visit the Cyber Aware website: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware

Scam alert: Omicron variant PCR test phishing emails

Scam alert: Omicron variant PCR test phishing emails Wasting no time at all, scammers are already sending fake emails about the new Omicron ...