Advice and Guidance
If you have been a victim of crime, don’t suffer in silence. Even if you do not want to report the crime to the police, think about telling a trusted friend or family member so they can help and support you. Nottinghamshire Victim CARE can also provide you with help and support even if you do not want to report the crime to the Police.
Victim CARE can provide:
- Emotional support to help you cope and recover from the crime
- Advocacy with other agencies and organisations
- Advice on crime prevention and provision of target hardening equipment (if required)
- Practical support and advice
- Restorative Justice
- Support applying to Criminal Injuries Compensation (CICA)
Call Nottinghamshire Victim CARE on 0800 304 7575 or click here to request a call back.
Action Fraud is the national centre for reporting fraud and cybercrime. You can make a report online here - https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/reporting-fraud-and-cyber-crime or call them on 0300 123 2040 (from Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm).
Fraud occurs when someone tries to gain something from you through deception or dishonesty. Fraud can be referred to as ‘scams’ or a ‘con’, and can be conducted face to face, over the phone or internet.
Some fraudsters will go from door to door on the chance that someone will answer. They will typically be selling goods or services that either don’t exist or are of very poor quality, hoping that they can convince you into paying them. No matter how aggressive or insistent someone is on the door step, if you feel pressured or uncomfortable, try to end the conversation quickly and firmly. If they persist report them to the Police on 101 – and remember if you feel threatened or in danger due to how they are acting, you should call 999.
Online fraud is a growing area of concern. There are many ways in which someone could become the victim of fraud online:
Romance/Dating Fraud – someone is approached online and befriended, leading them to believe they are entering into a genuine romantic relationship. These fraudsters will then being to appeal to you emotionally with a story designed to prompt you to offer them money.
Holiday fraud – fraudsters will advertise holiday accommodation that doesn’t exist or isn’t available. The fraud becomes apparent only when you arrive at the destination, and long after you’ve paid them.
Ticket/Event fraud – seemingly reasonably priced tickets for events that have sold out or have otherwise expensive tickets can be a scam – with the tickets you’ve purchased turning out to be fake or even reported stolen and therefore invalidated.
Identity fraud – scammers can gain a lot of information from public social media profiles, the ‘edited’ electoral register and from phishing emails. They will sometimes send correspondence via text or email pretending to be from your bank to gain access to personal details.
Looking After Yourself
Everyone reacts differently to experiencing a crime. It is important however to recognise that whatever has happened to you, it can still feel like a violation.
If you have any physical injuries, it is important that you get these checked out as soon as possible at either a walk in centre or Accident and Emergency – you can find your local urgent care centre here https://www.nhs.uk/service-search/Urgent-Care/LocationSearch/0
You might also find that you feel suddenly quite emotional, you might struggle to sleep properly or feel anxious being in your home or out and about. It is important that you recognise that all of these are not unusual to experience following any crime.
Some ways you can help yourself during this time:
- Let your friends and family know what has happened, and if you feel comfortable, tell them how you feel
- If possible, speak to your workplace or school – see whether they can offer flexibility or time off to sort things out
- If you are struggling with your emotional wellbeing, speak to your GP – they may be able to refer you for counselling
The NHS Moodzone pages have a lot of tips on how to boost your emotional wellbeing which you can find here.
Below are some simple tips to help you stay safe and protect yourself from fraud.
- Be vigilant with your personal data - don’t give out personal information without without checking who you are giving it to and why. Whilst online, ensure your privacy settings are set appropriately on social media and make sure you have secure passwords set for your accounts – for more information on this check the governments cyber security site https://www.cyberaware.gov.uk/passwords.
- Make sure your computer anti-virus is up to date, and that your operating system is also up to date as this can prevent people hacking your computer – see further advice here https://www.getsafeonline.org/protecting-your-computer/software-updates/.
- Online fraud may often start with a ‘phishing’ email asking to email personal information, password or bank details. If you do receive strange or unexpected emails – do not click on any links or open any attachments – just delete the email straight away
- Never send money electronically or through your bank to a stranger.
- Your bank will never ask you to confirm sensitive information such as your card pin over email or the phone - if anything seems odd, go to your branch to discuss in person or contact them via your own contact details
- Remember – if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Once you have reported to Action Fraud they will pass details of your case on to the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) within the City of London Police, and you should receive a NFIB reference number. The NFIB are able to use the data to look at wider fraud and cybercrime patterns across the country.
After this your case is then reviewed by an expert to judge whether there is enough information to send to a Police force for investigation. The NFIB will update you if this happens, and provide you with a named contact within that force. If you are considered to be a vulnerable victim, you will also be offered an enhanced service.
Unfortunately, not all reports to Action Fraud are able to progress to investigation with the Police.
Getting my money back after fraud
Although Action Fraud aren’t able to recover money for you after reporting to them, from May 2019 there is now a voluntary code which means more victims of bank transfer scams can get their money back. See the link here for more information on how to get support with this - https://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/advice/how-to-get-your-money-back-after-a-scam
In some cases, where it isn’t possible to recover the fund that have been lost to fraud, it is important to get support to handle any debt that you have incurred. Letting creditors and your bank know what has happened as soon as possible is important for you to be able to manage the situation in the best way.
Speaking to a specialist organization like Step Change https://www.stepchange.org/ can give you reassurance in tackling the situation. Citizen’s Advice can also offer support - https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/debt-and-money/