Warning - don't get caught by Council Tax scam
10th April 2019
The Highland Council has been alerted to a Council Tax scam whereby scammers are cold calling and claiming that the resident can have their Council Tax band reassessed upon payment of £150.
Council Tax bands are determined by the Assessor and Electoral Registration Officer who is independent from the Highland Council.
If you have any queries regarding your Council Tax band please contact the Assessor at email@example.com
The Assessor does not cold call customers nor reassess Council Tax bands in this way. This is a scam and the scammers are taking advantage of annual Council Tax bills being sent out at this time.
If you receive an email offering a Council Tax refund and asking you to provide you bank account details by clicking on a link, ignore it and delete the email.
If you are cold-called and asked to provide your bank details to receive a Council Tax refund, ignore the request and hang up.
Allan Gunn, Head of Revenues & Customer Services explained: "Any communication with Council Tax payers from the Council's Corporate Resources Service about something like a refund would be in writing. We would never cold call asking for bank details.
"Anyone receiving such an unsolicited call is advised to end the call immediately. Under no circumstances give any personal details to the caller. If anyone has a neighbour or relative who may be more susceptible to such activity, it would be helpful if this advice was passed on to them.
"If you have any doubt as to the authenticity of the call, please call the Council's freephone Council Tax helpline on 0800 393811."
Highland Council's Trading Standards Manager David MacKenzie added: "Our message is for members of the public to be extremely wary when they receive an unsolicited telephone call, text or email offering to reduce or claim back council tax on their behalf. This could be a ploy by scammers to gain confidential information such as bank account details from unsuspecting recipients. Our advice is to be on your guard and don’t respond. If residents think that they may be entitled to a reduction in their Council Tax, householders can contact Council Tax and Benefits Helpline on 0800 393811 for advice and assistance.
"Highland Council Trading Standards work in partnership with Advice Direct Scotland (ADS). Concerned residents can contact ADS who offer free and confidential consumer advice on Freephone 0808 164 6000 or by email through their website address at: www.consumeradvice.scot. Alternatively residents can also contact ADS through their Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/advice.scot/"
Road users are advised that on Saturday 22 June 2019 part of the C1112 Glen Affric Road will be temporarily closed to vehicles from 11am to 5pm during the Highland Cross 2019 event. The area affected is between the road's junction with the C1110 Cannich - Fasnakle - Kerrow Wood Road and its end at the north side of the road bridge over the Abhainn Gleann nam Fiadh.
People working in Highland trades businesses are being urged by The Highland Council to attend a supplier briefing roadshow event near them coming soon across the region if they wish to tender for future Council contracts. The Council has created a new Trades Services Framework for repair, maintenance and minor works to maintain and improve the Council estate and to help deliver the Council's property maintenance programme for domestic and non-domestic properties.
Steve Walsh OBE has been appointed as the Chief Executive designate for High Life Highland, it was announced today by Donald McLachlan, the Chair of the charity's Board. Mr Walsh will take up post in early September 2019, following the retirement of current Chief Executive, Ian Murray.
Highland Council Trading Standards have been made aware that cold call telephone scammers have recently changed tactics and are now targeting individual bank customers to gain access to bank accounts and clear bank accounts of cash. The so-called "authorised push payment scam" involves a fraudster impersonating a bank representative and phoning an unsuspecting potential victim by telephone.
The Highland Council is asking communities and other stakeholders for their thoughts and opinion on a draft strategy to improve the town centres of Brora, Dornoch, Golspie, Thurso and Wick. The draft Caithness and Sutherland Town Centre Strategy presents several potential actions for each of the town centres.
Highland schools and Police call on people to share information on suspected anti-social, alcohol and drug activity. Highland Council secondary schools in the Mid Highland area and Police Scotland are writing to parents and carers urging them to share any concerns or information related to possible anti-social behaviour, alcohol and drug activity in their areas.
William Gilfillan, Director of Community Services will be leaving the Council on Friday, 7th June 2019. William joined Highland Council from Fife Council in 2000 to lead the New Community School development in Alness Academy.
Highland Council is to seek the views of local communities on a proposal to establish a Gaelic Medium catchment area for Mount Pleasant Primary School. The change is being proposed in line with Statutory Guidance on Gaelic Medium Education.
Re- opening on the horizon for Caithness. Highland Council's Care Learning and Housing Committee today agreed a package of revenue and capital funding which is a major milestone towards the re-opening of Caithness Horizons, Thurso.
The Highland Council's new Education Transformation programme is taking shape with various initiatives put in place to deliver better educational outcomes for young people, as detailed in a presentation to the Care, Learning and Housing Committee today (29 May 2019). The Education Transformation programme has the dual purpose of improving outcomes for all children and young people whilst ensuring that resources are used wisely and efficiently.
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