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Posted on: October 4th 2021   •    Posted in: Community, General News, Tenants

Scams to be aware of June 2024

Don't be fooled by scammers

We know scams are currently happening in the local area and, more broadly, in the UK. We want to protect our residents, families in the local area and the wider community.

We aim to update this page when we know about other possible scams.

In the meantime, if you want to report a scam to us, please email us at communications@havebury.com. We can then communicate this on our website and social channels – You can help protect others.


Companies claiming to be Havebury

We have been made aware of companies calling our residents claiming to be from Havebury, asking whether or not they would like to be reimbursed for any repairs/issues they have experienced in their homes. There has also been a similar incident where the caller claimed the resident was in arrears, which needed to be paid within two hours. Both of these phone calls came from a private number.

We would advise you not to partake in conversation with anyone who:

  • Calls you unexpectedly, asking you questions about your tenancy.
  • Calls from a number you do not recognise. All Havebury calls will come from 0300 3300 900 or a number starting with 01284. If unsure, hang up and call us back on 0300 3300 900 to double-check.
  • Asks for your bank details.
  • Makes you feel uncomfortable.

If in doubt, hang up!


Companies claiming to be our contractors

We have been made aware of individuals knocking at our resident’s properties claiming to be one of our contractors. They are conversing with the resident and telling them they need repairs done to the outside of their property, specifically chimneys.

We would advise you not to converse with anyone who knocks at your property unexpectedly, asking you about property repairs. We will always inform you if you are due a visit from a member of our team or our contractors.

If you are concerned, please report it to us and the police.


Companies claiming to be working with/for Havebury

We recently had a resident get in contact with us to tell us they had been contacted by a person who claimed to be from ‘the social housing support team’. This person then went on to ask the tenant several questions;

  • Have you any cracks in the ceiling?
  • Have you got any condensation?
  • Do you have any damp or mould?
  • Have you reported this to Havebury?
  • How would you rate them?
  • Do you have an RTB?
  • Do you have a problem with rats or rodents?

We have also been made aware of phone calls that have been made offering tenants bathroom or kitchen upgrades on behalf of ‘the housing association’. These calls came from numbers beginning with 0330.

There has also been a report of phone calls from a company called IGNIX, who said they were working on behalf of the local council to install a CO detector.

We have also received reports of calls from ‘Rowelle Facebook at Risk group’ on the number 07471747602. The caller asked the residents to share photos of their home via WhatsApp so they could see what repairs were needed. They told the resident they were working on behalf of the housing association.

If anyone else finds themselves on the receiving end of any phone calls like this, do not disclose any information to the caller and terminate the call immediately. You can also call us back on 0300 3300 900 to double-check.

We will always advise our residents if we instruct any other company to make contact with them or do work on their property. All Havebury calls will come from our 0300 3300 900 or a number starting with 01284.


Energy Bill Relief Scheme (EBRS) Energy Bills Discount Scheme (EBDS)

We have been made aware of a resident receiving a phone call to discuss energy discounts and rebates. The caller explained they were from Havebury when this, in fact, was not the case.

If anyone else finds themselves on the receiving end of a phone call like this, do not disclose any information to the caller and terminate the call immediately. You can also call us at 0300 3300 900 to confirm with us.

If you are looking for advice about the cost of living crisis, you can click here, or alternatively, you can call 0300 3300 900 entering extension number 7305 when prompted.


Social media

We recently ran a prize draw on our social media channels where residents were asked to comment on the post. Unfortunately, scam profiles were set up which looked identical to ours. These scam profiles informed residents that they were winners and said they needed to click a link and confirm their bank details. When we run competitions, we will never ask for your bank details. Please be wary with links you are unsure of, and if you are in doubt, please call us on 0300 3300 900 or email the Communications team at communications@havebury.com


Companies claiming to be performing damp surveys

We have been made aware of residents getting calls from numbers starting in 0151 claiming to be calling on behalf of all housing associations.

These callers asked the resident to pay £500 immediately for a damp survey.

We will always advise our tenants if we instruct any other company to make contact with them or do work on their property. All Havebury calls will come from our 0300 3300 900 or a number starting with 01284.

We will also not charge you for us to perform any damp survey.


‘No win, no fee’ lawyers targeting tenants

Inside Housing (a magazine specialising in social housing news and features) recently reported that dishonest lawyers are targeting some social housing residents. They seek to profit from new legislation intended to raise standards in rented homes.

Reports state that these solicitors are knocking on front doors across social housing estates, telling residents not to allow their landlords to do repairs. They then encourage the resident to pursue a claim under the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018 on a “no win, no fee” basis.  In some cases, these end up in court hearings, and the resident is liable for legal fees worth several thousand pounds or their landlord’s legal fees if they are unsuccessful.

If you have repairs to report, please contact us via myHavebury or call 0300 3300 900, selecting options 2, 1 and 1. For updates on changes we have made due to COVID, please click here.

Representatives from Havebury will always have their identification on display when we visit you in your home, so if you are in doubt, do not let someone in.


Housing disrepair claims

We are aware of a company called ‘Housing Disrepair Gurus’ emailing residents, claiming to be able to help them claim compensation for ‘housing disrepair’. We would ask that you do not engage with these emails as they could contain phishing links or a virus that could be harmful to your device.

If you have any issues with your home, please get in contact with us in the first instance to see if there is a way we can help.


Phishing email saying that your National Insurance number has been disabled

There is an email circulating that says, “GOV. UK has disabled a number of National Insurance Number due to numerous fraudulent activity reports in the era of BREXIT.”

The fraudsters have tried to name every UK government department they can think of here (from “hmrc.co. uk” to “Jobcentre GOV. UK Plus”) and have even included the GOV.UK logo for good measure.

They then go on to say “a large number of National Insurance Numbers has been a target of identity theft in this period” and “you are now required to reactivate your NIN” (by clicking on the link (in bright red just in case you miss it)). Pretending they are acting in your interests is a common tactic of scammers.

Besides the grammar being incorrect in this email, to our knowledge, it isn’t usual to shorten National Insurance number to NIN. Also, emails from government organisations tend to end in gov.uk, definitely not hamanasu.jp, as in this case.

Remember, you will never be required to “reactivate” your National Insurance number. You can forward phishing emails to report@phishing.gov.uk.


Scams

  1. Breached Stay at home regulations scam
    Where it appears that messages have come from .GOV.uk saying you have a fine for leaving your home.
  2. Free school meals scam
    Asking the recipient for their bank details to ensure they still get their child’s free school meals.
  3. Ordering products
    Where people have ordered protective face masks, hand sanitiser, and other products. These have never arrived.
  4. Failed Payments
    If you get an email or text message telling you that your payment has failed, please be very wary. Independently check this by going to the company’s official website or using their app. Do not click on any links provided. Alternatively, you can check your bank account using online banking or telephone banking. 
  5. Covid vaccination invites from the NHS
    The NHS has warned people to be vigilant about fake invitations to have the coronavirus vaccination, sent by scammers. The scam email includes a link to “register” for the vaccine, but no registration for the real vaccination is required. The fake site also asks for bank details either to verify identification or to make a payment. The NHS says it would never ask for bank details, and the vaccine is free.

Companies that you may need to be aware of-

  • Paypal
  • HMRC
  • .GOV.uk
  • Amazon
  • TV Licencing
  • o2

Advice from Action Fraud

  • Stop: Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.
  • Challenge: Could it be fake? It’s ok to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
  • Protect: Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud*.

Your bank or the police will NEVER ask you to transfer money or move it to a safe account.


The DWP takes security very seriously but you need to be alert.

Organised fraudsters will pretend to be Government Departments often to try and trick you into calling a number, send an email or click on a link. These sites look like a DWP site but is a fraudulent site.

Never pass your personal information if you have any queries over the nature of the contact.

*You should report the fraud to Action Fraud using the following link http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/report_fraud. Or you can call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2050 (charged at the normal network rate). They are open Monday to Friday, 09:00 – 18:00


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