Cumbria Trading Standards and Cumbria Police have received reports of older and vulnerable residents in Cumbria being targeted by mail order scams.
The householder will usually receive a letter from what appears to be a genuine mail order company which tells you that you have won a large prize. To claim your winnings you have to purchase items from the catalogue or send an administration fee. If you read the small print you will discover that you've simply been given the opportunity to enter a sweepstake and you will never receive the promised prize. Instead you will receive more letters promising further cash prizes.
Anybody can be conned by the scammers, it is usually the vulnerable who end up suffering the most from these types of scams so we would like to remind friends and families to look out for these scam letters.
Trading Standards and the Police support the Think Jessica campaign which was started by Marilyn Baldwin in 2007 who was unable to help her mother Jessica. For 5 years Jessica was targeted by scammers and during that period the Royal Mail delivered 30,000 criminal scam mail letters to her. Her daughter believes the torment the scammers inflicted on her contributed to her death. Think Jessica is now a registered charity supported by Trading Standards, police forces and agencies nationwide and is committed to making people aware of the danger and financial implications caused by postal and telephone scams.
For more information please visit www.thinkjessica.com
Anyone who is concerned about this or believes that a family member is a victim, can contact www.actionfraud.org.uk or call 0300 123 2040.
To reduce unwanted mail, register for free with the Mailing Preference Service at mpsonline.org.uk or call 0845 703 4599.