Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Great value Unlimited Broadband from an award winning provider  


Trading Standards and Citizens Advice launch new anti-scams initiative

6th July 2015

July is Scams Awareness Month and The Highland Council's Trading Standards team is joining forces with Citizens Advice Bureaux to warn consumers about the risks of being caught out.

Trading Standards Manager Gordon Robb explained. He said: "Many modern scams are perpetrated from overseas and often the only realistic and effective way to combat them is to raise awareness and stop people becoming victims in the first place. To address this we are delighted to be working together with our local Citizens Advice Bureaux on this campaign which will involve a number of events up and down the Highlands."

Manager of Inverness, Badenoch & Strathspey CAB Alasdair Christie added: "Scams come in all shapes & sizes. Our campaigning materials will encourage the public to ‘End the call, trash the email, rip-up the letter and close the door. Further, those who suspect scams are being asked to spread the word, with the hope of protecting others."

“Every week we see clients in our CAB offices that have had bad experiences with scams these range from Prize draws, sweepstakes and foreign lottery scams, miracle health cures, fake websites, copycat websites and false employment opportunities. Often the perpetrators of these scams prey on the elderly and vulnerable members of our communities.”

One developing trend identified by Trading Standards in Highland is a practice that has been dubbed a “Hoax Location Scams”. This is where an online scammer, usually based outwith the UK, adopts a false Highland business address. This gives them a spurious UK credibility and to Highland consumers they appear to be local. Then the scam occurs, as Gordon Robb explains:

“The scammer gets the consumer's money under false pretences; it might be a payment for a non-existent car, or for non-existent holiday accommodation abroad. The Highland address is subsequently discovered to be wholly false or entirely unconnected, the scammer difficult or impossible to trace, the money is lost and Highland’s reputation wrongly damaged in the process. We can and do act to have such websites taken down, but that can be too late for some victims. So this year we are launching a “name and shame” page on our website, which should show up in any web search, to alert consumers and sometimes the small businesses targeted, before they’re conned.”

The anti-hoax-location initiative is part of the Highland strategy for Scams Awareness Month. Following the successful national launch at Nairn CAB last Thursday, officers from Trading Standards will be assisting at awareness-raising events run by Citizens Advice Bureaux across the Highlands in July.

These include:

• 10 July, Portree, Skye, CAB open day on scams awareness
• 14 July, Aviemore, event at Aviemore Community School
• 15 July, Grantown-on-Spey, event at Craig MacLean Leisure Centre
• 25 July, Dornoch, stall at the Sutherland Show

Gordon Robb continued: “We work closely with the Highland CABs in the Highland Consumer Partnership, bringing together the strengths and expertise of both organisations to the benefit of local consumers and reputable businesses. This campaign is a good example of such joint working.”

If consumers want to report a scam or receive further advice they can contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on telephone number 03454 04 05 06, or visit their local CAB. Highland consumers can also contact the Council’s Trading Standards directly either in person or in writing at: The Highland Council Trading Standards, 38 Harbour Road, Inverness IV1 1UF.

The “Hoax location scams” webpage can be found at: See also:


Related Businesses


Related Articles

Beware Of Calls From Scammers Pretending To Be The Telephone Preference ServiceThumbnail for article : Beware Of Calls From Scammers Pretending To Be The Telephone Preference Service
Beware of calls from scammers pretending to be the Telephone Preference Service warns Highland Council Trading Standards.   Highland Council Trading Standards wish to warn consumers not to fall for a new telephone call scam in which fraudsters pretend to be calling from the Telephone Preference Service (or TPS).  
Redesign continues to deliver improvements
Recent outcomes of Redesign work were noted by Members at yesterday's Highland Council meeting.   In the first year of the programme, 8 redesign projects were undertaken using a "Lean" approach and 36 staff have been trained as facilitators.  
Resurfacing road works on B862 and B851
Motorists are being advised that The Highland Council is currently preparing to carry out resurfacing works at the following locations: • B862 Fort Augustus - Whitebridge - Torness - Dores – Inverness Road; specifically at Errogie Village (North Gateway), Errogie Village (South Gateway), and Compass Farm; and • B851 Errogie – Strathnairn – Daviot Bridge – Culloden Moor Road; specifically at Aberarder House.   Advanced works notification signage will be provided at various locations from Thursday 15 March 2018.  
Highland Council agrees 5-year Capital Programme
The Highland Council has agreed a capital programme of £482m over the next 5 years.   The Highland Council serves the largest geographical area in Scotland (over 30%) and has just under £2bn of assets on its balance sheet comprising, amongst other things, 203 operational schools, over 6,700km of roads and over 2,000 properties.  
Council Issues More Fines In Caithness For Dog Fouling and Fly Tipping
The Highland Council's Enforcement Officers have stepped up patrols in Caithness in a move to tackle the problem of littering, fly tipping and dog fouling.   A number of fixed penalty notices have been issued recently including an £80 fine for dog fouling in the Stafford Lane and Back Bridge area of Wick, a £200 fine for fly-tipping on Ackergill Street and another £80 fine for dog fouling in Lybster.  
Council Administration to present a programme of investment
Speaking ahead of today's Council meeting to agree the Council's Capital Programme for 2018/19 to 2022/23, Cllr Margaret Davidson, Leader of the Highland Council said:- "This programme delivers significant investment in a range of key projects across the Highlands.  We are investing in schools, roads, bridges, harbours and flood prevention schemes that will benefit our communities.  
Highland Council to make special case for capital investment
Highland Council is to make a special case for extra capital investment in the road infrastructure after a winter period which has seen the Highlands battered by some 57 days of severe weather.   Highland Council area is particularly subject to severe winter weather, which has a significant impact on the roads and other infrastructure.  
Highland Council Winter Road Condition And School Closure Report For Wednesday 7 March 2018
Maps of the Council's gritting routes by priority and policy are available online at   The information provided is a summary of reports from operational staff and is intended to give a general indication of typical conditions in each area at a point in time.  
Wick High Finalist In Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2018.Thumbnail for article : Wick High Finalist In Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2018.
The £48.5m Wick Community Campus built by Morrison Construction has been announced as a finalist at the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2018.   The project is entered in the category for "Excellence in Planning for a Successful Economy" against eight other finalists from across the UK with the winner to be announced during a ceremony at Milton Court Concert Hall on 24 May 2018.  
Partnership for Procurement - Supplying to the Public Sector
A Partnership for Procurement event was held in Inverness today (Thursday 6 March) to raise awareness and the capability of the third sector to successfully bid, supply and deliver services for the public sector.   Partnership for Procurement (P4P) is a new initiative funded through the Scottish Government's 10 Year Social Enterprise Strategy; supporting social enterprises and third sector organisations to better access public contracts and build partnerships.  

[Printer Friendly Version]