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SAFE HANDS NEWS


Latest 'Think Jessica' Video Launched


Message from Andy Fox Financial Abuse Safeguarding Officer, North Yorkshire Police

During my time in Trading Standards I worked very closely with a charity called 'Think Jessica' who support victims and their families from mail scams. Have you ever received a letter through the post informing that you have won a large cash prize and in order to claim that prize you need to send off a small 'admin fee'. If so, chances are, you are on a 'Suckers List'.

This is a list of people who at some point in the past have answered a scam mail or given their details for a free prize draw or other incentive. Scammers sell theses details to other scammers in the same way insurance companies sell details to other companies. In North Yorkshire alone this list exceeded 2500 residents.

These types of scams are invariably aimed at the elderly who are maybe lonely and isolated and the scammers will form a relationship with these people, grooming them to be potential victims. At times victims can lose several thousands of pounds genuinely believing they are going to win a prize.

I have been notified today that the latest 'Think Jessica' film is available to watch on Youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwXMsG2xkcM

If you believe you or a family member are a victim of scam mail visit www.thinkjessica.com for further advice and information




North Yorkshire Police  - 16 brrrrrrrrilliant tips to help put a Freeze on Fraud 

1) Whether it’s at the online checkout, trades people at your door or a letter or phone call you have received, it’s always vital to check the legitimacy of the company or the individual you are dealing with. Don’t ever be afraid to ask question and to get them to prove their credentials. If they are genuine they will provide the necessary identification and information. If you are not satisfied it’s best to report your concerns to the police.

2) Crucially, always keep at the forefront of your mind not to give away your personal information no matter what. This includes your name, home address, bank details, email address or phone number.

3) Many frauds start with a phishing email. Remember that banks and financial institutions will not send you an email asking you to click on a link and confirm your bank details. Do not trust such emails, even if they look genuine. You can always call your bank using the phone number on a genuine piece of correspondence, website (typed directly into the address bar) or the phone book to check if you’re not sure.

4) Please make sure your computer has up-to-date anti-virus software and a firewall installed. Ensure your browser is set to the highest level of security notification and monitoring to prevent malware issues and computer crimes.

5) Be extremely wary of post, phone calls or emails offering business deals out of the blue. If an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is. Always question it.

6) Always shield your PIN and be vigilant at cash machines and checkouts. Don’t ever send it over the internet or disclose it to anyone. Your bank or the police will never phone or email you to ask you to disclose it.

7) Shop only on secure websites. Before submitting card details, look for a padlock or an unbroken key symbol on your web browser. Also check that the internet browser address changes from ‘http’ to https’ to indicate you have a secure connection.

8) When you are talking to people on social media, chat rooms or dating sites, make sure you know who it is you are talking to and never ever pass on personal or financial information to them online.

9) Sign-up to Verified by Visa or MasterCard Secure Code whenever you are given the option while shopping online. This involves you registering a password with your card company and adds an additional layer of security to online transactions with signed-up retailers.

10) Check receipts against bank statements regularly. If you find an unfamiliar transaction contact your bank or card company immediately.

11) Shred or completely destroy all documents which contain personal details and don’t keep such documents in your car or handbag.

12) When buying tickets online, check with the venue to find out when they are being released and sent out. Also check that you know the geographic address of the website company and that they have a working landline phone number. Make sure there is a refund policy in case something goes wrong.

13) When dealing with trades people never hand over a cash deposit. Be wary of special offers or warnings about your home and don’t agree to a trader starting any work straight away. Take time to consult with someone you trust for a second opinion, and speak to friends, family or neighbours before making any decision.

14) Don’t be rushed into making a decision you are not comfortable with. Fraudsters use pressure to force you to make an unwise decision. This could be by saying it is a limited time offer or that money is needed due to an emergency. Be confident to tell people that you require time to think over a decision and then discuss it with people you trust.

15) Get up-to-date. Many national media outlets often broadcast fraud trends and information and advice. Check out BBC Radio 4’s “You and Yours” consumer affairs and Finance programmes. The Guardian and Telegraph online Finance and Technology sections are also very useful sources of information surrounding fraud.

16) Scammers are quick to identify new ways of conning people out of their money. You must report all incidents of fraud to Action Fraud UK and not to the police. Call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or report fraud online at www.actionfraud.police.uk.

For more information and crime prevention advice regarding fraud, please go to the North Yorkshire Police website www.northyorkshire.police.uk/freezeonfraud




Christmas Fraud: Beware of fakes

In a recent BBC news story people are being urged to beware of fake products and websites in the run-up to Christmas. Offers for mobile phones, clothes, shoes and jewellery are the most likely to be fraudulent, according to the Action Fraud group.

Simple tips to avoid fraud

  • If something seems cheaper than expected. it could be poor quality, fake or just non-existent
  • Use methods like PayPal when buying on auction site
  • Never transfer money to a stranger
  • If you're buying tickets, always buy from official sources and never pay by direct transfer
  • Research online holiday deals to ensure that you are buying a genuine offer and check that it is registered with ABTA and ATOL

For further details read the full article here.
                              
   



Action Fraud - Fake Twitter Account


Unfortunately any online account can be targeted by Fraudsters.  Action Fraud themselves were targeted and a fake Twitter account was created recently, however this was quickly spotted and action taken to suspend the account. 

As Action Fraud advise in thier tweet, check for the Blue Tick when linking to organisations on Social Media. 
 


New: Fundraising Preference Service


The Fundraising Preference Service has a new website-based service launched on 6 July 2017.

By entering your details on the FPS website, you can choose to stop email, telephone calls, addressed post and/or text messages directed to you personally from a selected charity or charities. 
                                                                           


Latest News: 'Colossal' amounts of money is being conned from pensioners in North Yorkshire

The Northern Echo have recently reported on how Police are stepping up a scam awareness campaign after latest figures show that pensioners are at particular risk from fraudsters.   

The awareness campaign will look to provide handy anti-fraud to residents over 70 to help them identify possible scams.  

Read the full Northern Echo article here

                                             



Latest News: How to protect yourself from the latest phone scam


National Trading Standards shared a recent article on a recent phone scam and ways that you can protect yourself from the scammer. 

You can access the article direct by clicking here


                               


3rd January:  New Year's Resolution


Have you set yourself a New Year’s resolution to become more organised with your mail?

But does the thought of setting up a filing system for your correspondence fill you with dread?

Call us now!

Our competent Safe Hands Advocates are waiting to support you with this often over-whelming task.

Tel: 01609 778652

   


26th October: WOW - We have been busy, busy, busy in October!

At the start of the month we were delighted to join Boroughbridge and District Community Care.  It was lovely to meet up with everyone and over a cup of coffee and of course a biscuit have a good chat about the work we do at North Yorkshire Advocacy and how we can support people in the local area. 

World Mental Health Day was celebrated on the 10th October and we had a great day at the Richmondshire Cricket Club at an event hosted by Tees, Esk and Wear Valley’s NHS Foundation.  Along with lots of other organisations, we provided a market place of information where the public and other professionals could find out about the different types of support available in the area. 

We have also been out and about meeting the lovely people of North Yorkshire at the Parkinson’s Society, the South Selby Tenants Association and at a local food producer, where we were pleased to support their “Money Matters Week”.

Our final event of the month was to take part in the North Yorkshire Wider Partnership Conference.  What a brilliant day we had, meeting and working with other professionals to make North Yorkshire a healthier and happier county – it was excellent! 

 

 


5th September: Yorkshire Energy Doctor Update


North Yorkshire Advocacy were pleased to welcome Kate, The Yorkshire Energy Doctor, to provide our staff & volunteers with some training late in 2015 and we continue to liaise closely with them to help support residents across the county. 

As summer draws to a close and the temperatures cool there is a focus again on managing fuel bills and The Yorkshire Energy Doctor website is the ideal place to visit to get the information and support needed.   

Check out the news pages to gain information on the schemes that are starting to re-open for residents to apply for a grant of £140 to help with winter energy bills.  Also in their  news is their latest Training dates, which are running in September & October and well worth attending.  

For this information and so much more visit: http://www.yorkshireenergydoctor.org.uk/

                                     


 27th July: Easingwold Library


Wendy & Ken popped back over to Easingwold again this month, this time spending time at the Library, where they set up a stall and were on hand to have a chat about the Safe Hands project and how it can help vulnerable people in the community get to grips with their mail & finance.

It was a delightful session, followed by them getting out and about the local area introducing themselves and dropping off leaflets.  One such visit ending in an invite to join the Boroughbridge Community Care lunch next month!
                        


 

17th June: Easingwold and District Over Fifties Forum "Eng-AGE" Event

Come along and join us at the Easingwold and District Over Fifties Forum "Eng-AGE" Event in association with Age UK North Yorkshire.

Wendy and Ken will be at The Gaultres Centre in Easingwold this Friday, 17th June between 10:00am - 1:00pm. Wendy, our Safe Hands Project Coordinator says: 

"Call at our stall and have a chat with us, we will be delighted to tell you about our work and the ways we can support you."

The Gaultres Centre, Market Place, Easingwold, YO61 3AD

                  


2nd June:  Spreading the news in Skipton

The Safe Hands Group Information and Support Sessions are going from strength to strength.  This week we were busy in Skipton working along-side our colleagues from Horton Housing.

Our Safe Hands Project Coordinator said:

“We had a fantastic afternoon at the Horton Housing Community Café as we shared information and learnt from other people’s experiences.  We love visiting Craven and will be back in Settle on the 22nd June”. 

For more information regarding the project please select ‘Mail and Finance’ from the top menu here on the website. 

   



Spring is here


Why don’t you have a spring clean and a fresh start and get all of your affairs into order?

Our trained advocates are here to support you with often daunting task of organising your mail and finances.  If you have let your mail pile up or you just don’t know what to do with it.  We are here to help you.

Contact us now and get that spring clean started straight away!

Tel: 01609 778652

Email: admin@nyadvocacy.org

 
   


24th March: Thirsk Library


Today we have had a really enjoyable morning holding an information desk at Thirsk library which is located at the Meadowfields extra care housing scheme.

It was lovely to chat with visitors to the library telling them about the work we do at North Yorkshire Advocacy and about the Safe Hands Project.

Referral to the service can be made by telephoning 01609 778652 or emailing admin@nyadvocacy.org


    

12th January: Safe Hands Information & Support Session

“So …. The preparation is all done, the car is loaded and away we go to the first Safe Hands group information and support session.  

Today we are in Sherburn-in-Elmet at Harold Mills House at a community group run by Horton Housing.

The session went very well; we talked about recognising and dealing with postal scams and junk mail.  We chatted about changing energy suppliers and looked at modern banking, including the process of changing current bank accounts. 

There was plenty of discussion as we heard and learnt from other people’s experiences.  Then at the end of the session everyone went away with a Safe Hands Information Pack and North Yorkshire Advocacy’s contact details, should they require further 1-1 support.

What a great start to our Group Support work and more sessions are already booked in for the coming weeks.”  

Author: Ken - Advocate Volunteer

            

14th November 2015: Staff Training Day

North Yorkshire Advocacy Staff & Volunteers had an informative morning together learning about energy awareness. 

We were joined by Kate, The Yorkshire Energy Doctor, who delivered a brilliant training session on fuel poverty and the schemes that are available to ensure clients keep warm at an affordable cost.  This was extremely useful especially as we enter the colder winter months!

For more information, The Yorkshire Energy Doctor can be contacted on: kate@yorkshireenergydoctor.org.uk


   

13th November 2015: NYCC Volunteer Fair

We had a great morning at the NYCC Volunteer Fair held at County Hall.

This was for Members of NYCC staff to along to find out about volunteering opportunities within North Yorkshire. 

It was also good to meet up with other organisations from across the region and learn about the valuable and much needed services that are provided by the voluntary sector.

                                           

11th November 2015: Ripon Walled Garden 

 

North Yorkshire Advocacy is pleased to be working with the Ripon Walled Garden Community Cafe. 

 

Their members have been busy making chocolate truffles for our open days and we hope you get the chance to taste one – They are Delicious!

 

For more information on Ripon Walled Garden visit their website: www.riponwalledgarden.org.uk

 
             

21st October 2015: Selby Advice

I’ve been to a great event today held by Selby Advice, where Voluntary and Community based organisations work together providing a service which enables people to find the correct help and support in the Selby District. 

It was brilliant to have the opportunity to meet and chat with so many people from different organisations along with members of the public.  Hope I get the chance to work with some of them in the future!

Thanks to Selby Advice for organising such a wonderful event. http://selbyadvice.org.uk





 

15th October 2015: A Cowardly Crime

 

This week is Hate Crime Awareness Week and so on Thursday I was busy working alongside NY Police and many other organisations at Northallerton Town Hall raising awareness of this crime.  


All sections of the community can find themselves a victim of hate crime.  Therefore if you have been targeted because of your race, religion, faith, disability, sexual orientation or gender identity it needs to be reported.  Victims should not simply put up with Hate Crime because they are seen to be “different”.


NY Advocacy can support you through this process.  Contact us now – we are here to help!







6th October 2015: Valued Volunteers

What a brilliant morning I have had at the Northallerton Volunteering Fair chatting to lots of people about volunteering for the Safe Hands Project.  


Our valued volunteers are a key part of delivering this much needed service and I look forward to new people joining our team.  If you are interested call me now and help to change someone’s life.  



1st October 2015: International Day for Older Persons 2015

At North Yorkshire Advocacy we recognise the achievements and contributions that older people make to our society.  We value our volunteers of all ages, who share their experiences and skills with us all – amazing!!!


14th September 2015: Offering a Safe Hand



Hi. I’m Wendy and I have just started to work on the Safe Hands Project, where we support clients with the often overwhelming task of organising and managing their mail and finance.  

We work in the Hambleton, Richmondshire and Selby areas, so contact me now if you would like to learn more about the project, you need support or would like to join our team as a volunteer.  

I look forward to hearing from you soon!