Coronavirus scams prevention

26 March 2020
Coronavirus scams prevention Wash your hands of Coronavirus scams!   Read it.  Share it.  Prevent it. The National Trading Standards (NTS) Scams Team has produced some materials to help promote awareness around Coronavirus (COVID-19) scams at this difficult time. The team has published various tools that will help spread the message that criminals are exploiting fears about Coronavirus to be able to prey on members of the public, particularly older and vulnerable people who are isolated from family and friends.  

On the Against Scams Partnership pages of our website you will find a page for scam prevention resources where you will find: Coronavirus infographic – this is printable and sharable via social media or email. Link to the updated FAS training materials  Social media pack – please share on all your platforms (Word and PDF files available) Letter template – for partners who want to contact people in vulnerable situations in their area. Please add your own logos and contact information and edit as you wish. Please share amongst your partners, groups, communities and social media platforms to support us in this campaign and help share the important scams awareness messages. If you haven’t already please follow @AgainstScams and @NTSscamsteam. Please join the fight against scams by registering to become a Friend Against Scams Follow the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Against Scams Partnership (CAPASP) on Facebook or Twitter or visit our website for more information. Dr Liz Robin vlog  We’re sharing a regular video blog from our Director of Public Health, Dr Liz Robin, explaining the public health advice about dealing with the Coronavirus. Click here to watch today’s video blog. Garden Waste changing to one collection every four weeks in Peterborough This will ensure essential refuse services (general waste and recycling) can be maintained to all residents during the Covid-19 outbreak. Further advice being issued includes:  No extra garden waste placed by the side of the bin will be collected as this would slow down crews and would require more resources  Bin lids should be shut and not overflowing  Garden waste should not be put in the refuse bin  The Aragon Direct Services bin collection crews are key workers doing a vital job, please show your support by driving safely near them.   Ensure bins are placed out for collection by 6.45am  Further information is available on our website.  Aragon Direct Services are also actively working with their subcontractors who work on their behalf for example Tree Services, to ensure social distancing procedures are put in place where possible. Change in working for refuse collectors in Peterborough  Aragon Direct Services bin collection crews are key workers doing a vital job. The structure and nature of the duties carried out by key workers means there are times when they need to be in closer proximity to people to carry out their work, as is the case for doctors, carers and police officers. For example, crews must travel together in the same refuse collection vehicle. The following safety steps, have been put in to limit the likelihood of spreading Covid-19 as much as possible, while ensuring they can still provide an essential service to residents:  All vehicles have been issued with specialist wipes, and instructions given to staff on which surfaces to wipe down regularly   Crews always have gloves as part of their issued personal protective equipment and the vehicle have hand sanitising facilities  At the depot hand washing and hand sanitising facilities has been increased  Early last week Aragon introduced new procedures for shift patterns for front line staff to reduce mass gathering at the start and end of shifts  Staff are being updated daily with information around symptoms, safe working practices and changes in government guidance.    Aragon Direct Services are also actively working with their subcontractors who work on their behalf, for example Tree Services, to ensure social distancing procedures are put in place where possible. Daily management meetings are being held to ensure staff safety is paramount while still delivering key frontline services. Road projects across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough  In light of the Government guidance about ‘stay at home’, after speaking to our contractors and in order to protect the public and our workforce, we have taken the decision to close down all project sites. During these difficult times, we have taken the latest advice, assessed the staffing issues due to COVID-19 and taken into account a number of supply chain partners who have already begun to withdraw. We also want to keep our roads open and available for key workers and emergencies as well as protect the workforce and our contractors who are not able to work whilst adhering to the 2m/6ft distance rule. We will make our sites safe and close down. This will include, the Dutch-Style roundabout project in Cambridge and the King’s Dyke advance work. The A15 junction 18, Rhubarb Bridge works will complete tomorrow (Friday) as planned, with just minor finishing elements such as landscaping to follow at a later date.   All emergency, safety critical work and essential maintenance will continue and resources will be prioritised for this to be carried out. Cllr Steve Count, Leader at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “It is absolutely vital we all follow the advice from Government and stay at home. We have assessed this impact on our highway services contracts and the ability to deliver on the ground and adopt a managed approach to the tightening restrictions and reduce risk. That is why both councils have taken this decision.” Cllr John Holdich, Leader at Peterborough City Council, said: “We have to be sensible and protect the public as well as our workforce. With a number of supply chains shutting down their operations, the need for social distancing, along with the pressure on resource we have had to take this decision to close down our sites. The work on Rhubarb Bridge is in the closing stages and will finish tomorrow as planned.” Helping provide schools and early years settings with clear information As the Local Authority we have been listening to schools and early years settings, and along with daily updates and conversations already taking place, have now provided comprehensive answers to the most commonly discussed topics. Jonathan Lewis, Service Director for Education at Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council said: “We have been working hard to provide schools and early years settings with clear information to help them navigate the ever-changing situation. Yesterday we wrote to our Heads and Leaders to share a comprehensive list of Frequently Asked Questions, which we complied based on the intelligence we have gathered from working closely with schools and Trust leaders, and through our daily meetings with the Department for Education. We will keep these updated on a daily basis. “With regard to Free School Meals in particular, we have been working hard with schools to put in place plans to continue our provision, so those families in receipt do not lose out.   A government scheme was planned for vouchers but this has been delayed.  Unfortunately we have been told about a scam where fraudsters have targeted parents so I want to reiterate, if you do receive an email asking for your bank details in relation to this, do not give them over, just delete the email straight away.” As of yesterday (Wednesday), only 2% of school children registered in Cambridgeshire were in attendance, while in Peterborough this was 1% – this shows parents are continuing to do their bit to stop the spread of the virus by keeping their children safely at home. The Government has launched its free WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Service. Parents and the public are encouraged to sign up to receive trustworthy and timely general information and advice about the Coronavirus. To use the free GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp, simply add 07860 064422 in your phone contacts and then message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.