Bank backs scam fight

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Angus Council has teamed up with the Royal Bank of Scotland in the fight against financial scammers targeting vulnerable people.

The ground breaking policy on financial harm adopted by Angus Council earlier this year requires the authority to work with partners, including banks, to pursue the goal of a scam free Angus.

Both the council and the bank met recently to join forces and hope the partnership will deter those from targeting certain sections of society.

Chair of the Angus Adult Protection Committee, Margaret Wells said: “We are delighted to have RBS on board as key partners in our efforts to reduce financial harm in Angus.

“RBS staff in Angus now have clear points of contact with trading standards and adult protection with whom they can discuss cases where vulnerable bank customers may have been, or are at, serious risk of financial harm.”

While Julie Coutts, local chief executive officer at RBS, added: “I am delighted to work closely with Angus Council to raise awareness of scams and financial abuse to protect more of our customers from financial harm.

“It’s a great opportunity to raise awareness of the types of scams and how customers can be targeted. By working together we can make much more of a difference in our local communities.”

A recent citizens’ panel survey conducted by Angus Council showed that over a quarter of local families may have had a family member who has been defrauded by criminals, with emails, phone callers and mail scams being the three most common.

It has been estimated that as much as £6.2 million is lost annually by the people of Angus to mail scams alone.

Scams affecting people in Angus include people phoning to offer to repair a computer fault, email messages promising rewards for people able to help get money out of a foreign country and glossy brochures promising huge cash prizes from unclaimed lottery winnings.

Angus Council’s spokesperson on consumer protection Councillor Mairi Evans said: “We are determined to help the people of Angus defend themselves from organised criminals – particularly those who target our more vulnerable citizens.”

You can report scams to trading standards via the council’s ACCESLine 08452 777 778 and fraud to Police Scotland on 101.