SCAMS: Protecting customers

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I am writing to let readers know about another major initiative that Royal Mail has launched to protect consumers from scam mail.

Scam mail involves professional fraudsters sending, often convincing, letters that are designed to trick people out of money or other valuables.

Scam mail can include bogus competitions and fake prize draws encouraging people to buy products to qualify for a prize which does not exist.

Last November, Royal Mail launched an industry-wide code of practice in conjunction with National Trading Standards, to crack down on scam mail.

Since then, Royal Mail, supported by the National Trading Standards (NTS) Scams Team, has stopped more than 700,000 scam items from reaching its customers.

Royal Mail has also started to proactively contact households it believes are receiving high volumes of scam mail.

The latest anti-scam initiative will initially focus on the most impacted customers.

Royal Mail will block and impound suspected scam mail at its distribution centres before it reaches the customer’s letterbox. Legitimate business and personal mail will continue to be delivered as normal.

Impacted customers will be able to contact a dedicated Royal Mail helpline on 0800 085 8003 for information if they have any concerns. They can also arrange a home visit from Royal Mail staff.

We are also relying on local communities to play a role in defeating the scammers. We are supporting Friends Against Scams, an NTS Scams Team initiative, which aims to prevent people from becoming victims of scams by empowering communities. The organisation provides lots of helpful guidance and advice.

If readers have any concerns about neighbours, friends or family, we would ask them to visit the website www.friendsagainstscams.org.uk

This could make all the difference in protecting people in our communities from these criminals, and defeating the scammers for good.

Thank you for our support in helping to keep vulnerable customers safe.

Rob Jenson

Royal Mail Operations Director