Isle of Man Office of Fair Trading – “Scams” Week
Of all the issues of concern raised with the Office of Fair Trading by consumers “scams” are the most frequent. They come by all forms of communication – letter, email, ‘phone calls, texts and fax and they affect consumers of all ages and circumstances.
A “scam” can be defined as “an attempt to cheat you out of your money”. Sometimes “scams” are clearly so – an African prince offering you a financial reward to help him remove money from his home country and requiring your bank details to do so – but some are much more subtle and difficult to assess.
The Office has arranged a week of anti-“scams” promotions to offer advice and support to consumers and consumer organisations on the Island on how to avoid being “scammed”.
The “Scams” Week will include talks to charities, community groups and government officials working with the vulnerable. OFT’s Consumer Advisers have been invited to give talks to residents at some of the sheltered housing complexes around the Island. Information will be supplied to the media and staff will take part in media interviews.
The Isle of Man Constabulary is supporting the week and the Crime Prevention Officer; Mike Radcliffe will also attend some of the events.
Following on from “Scams” Week the Office is inviting consumers to post any possible “scam” mail they have received into one of the “scams” postboxes dotted around the Island. By allowing the Office access to this mail it can see the volume and variety of the “scams” that are circulating on the Island and adapt its advice as necessary. Deposited “scams” mail cannot be returned to consumers but if any consumer would like any further advice they are welcome to mark this on their mail and Office staff will contact them.
These postboxes can be found at the OFT Office in Lord Street, Douglas; the Town Hall, Douglas; the Town Hall, Peel, the Town Hall, Ramsey and Castletown Town Hall and Civic Centre.
The Office wishes to thank everyone who has helped it with the organisation of “Scams” Week, allowed the use of their premises and shown support for the promotion of the anti-“scams” message.
Further information on “scams” can be found on the OFT website www.gov.im/oft or by calling the Office on 686500.
A “Scams” advice sheet can be found at http://www.gov.im/lib/docs/oft/scamsfactsheet.pdf