Initiatives, Scams & Criminal Activity - Boghead

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Initiatives, Scams & Criminal Activity

This page highlights scams which are currently impacting the South Lanarkshire area, specific criminal activity in the area, or government initiatives which may affect our area. The information is mainly provided by Neighbourhood Watch Scotland which is a local community initiative which receives the information directly from police, local authority and other sources. This page will be updated regularly as new local scams or initiatives are identified.

While you are here, why not check if your email (and passwords) have been compromised during one of the many big data breaches that we often hear about on the news (and lots of ones you may never have heard about). You can check in the online tool here. Just enter your email address (or mobile phone number - use international format so for the UK start with 44 and drop the initial 0) and click the pwned? button and the site will advise if your email (or phone number) has been breached and identify sources of the breach. It also tells you the date of each breach and what information has been revealed. If your email has been compromised then it is very important that you change your passwords immediately if you have not done so since the date of the latest breach. How many of us use the same password (or a small groups of passwords) for lots of sites? Once emails, passwords and other personal data have been accessed then that data is sold on via the dark web into the hands of scammers.

Trading Standards are now issuing a regular update of many of the typical scams which are doing the rounds of Scotland. You can find it here.

More general local scams or warnings are provided by RuralWatch Scotland below:

SCAM Contact Tracing - Protect Scotland App

NHS Scotland have launched a new test and protect mobile phone app, "designed to help us protect each other, reduce the spread of coronavirus and avoid further lockdowns". The app will alert you if you have been in close contact with another app user who tests positive for coronavirus and can help in determining contacts that you may have.

If you are contacted by NHS (test and protect) it will be by phone on a single national telephone number 0800 030 8012

Be aware that scammers are now exploiting this to commit fraud by contacting the general public advising them that they have been in near contact with someone who has tested positive with Coronavirus and as such you must get a test and self- isolate.
Scammer’s are thereafter asking for payments for booking tests / sending out testing kits by post / courier etc.

NHS Scotland Contact Tracers will:
  • in some cases, send a text to let you know that you will be receiving a call from NHS Scotland  (if mobile is available)
  • call from a single, national telephone number - 0800 030 8012
  • always introduce themselves, tell you why they are contacting you and address you by your name
  • give you the option to call back the above number to provide reassurance that the service is legitimate

Be aware that phone numbers can be spoofed. Consider phoning back using a different phone from the one your received the call. Call will be received on mobile, if concerned phone back on landline

Contact Tracers will never ask you:
  • for information other than your movements and the people you have been physically close to
  • to phone a premium rate number
  • to make a purchase, payment or donation
  • for your medical history unrelated to coronavirus
  • for your bank details
  • for your social media identities or login details, or those of your contacts
  • for your passwords or PIN numbers, or to set up any
  • for control of your computer, smartphone or tablet, or to download anything
  • to visit a website that does not belong to NHS Scotland or the Scottish Government

For further information please go to

Anyone with information can contact Police Scotland on 101, Advice Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Please circulate to family, neighbours, friends and colleagues


ILLEGAL TV Streaming (IPTV, KODI on Firestick or box)

Illegal streaming is the streaming of pirated copies of films or TV shows or premium sports content without the copyright owner’s permission. This can include watching illegal content using an add-on accessed from a device like a set-top box or a stick, streaming from an unauthorised website, or streaming via an app (on a mobile phone, tablet, laptop or gaming system) IPTV

Streaming hardware devices like set-top-boxes, or sticks in their unaltered form are legal - but many are being modified and then sold, with unauthorised add-ons pre-installed that allow people to access, stream and watch pirated copies of copyrighted content illegally. Similarly, apps maybe installed directly onto smart TVs to enable streaming of illegal content.

Some examples of pirated content are films that are not yet released in the UK, TV programmes that haven’t aired yet or TV programmes that are only being shown in the UK on subscription channels (e.g. SKY, BT Sports, Premier Sports, . . ) for which you don’t have an account, pay-per-view offerings for which you have not paid and sports events that are shown legally only on sports channels for which you do not have a subscription.

In short, if you are streaming and watching - without an official subscription - films, TV shows or sport that should be paid for (or that are not legally available in the UK), then you are streaming illegally.

It is not a grey area: those who load up, advertise, sell or distribute dodgy streaming boxes and sticks are committing a crime, as is anyone who uses one of these dodgy devices to stream illegal content.

Every time you access illegal content, whether it’s to watch your favourite film, sports or TV show using a modified box or stick or via unauthorised website, app, add-on or another illegal source, you are likely to be exposed to dangerous pop ups, malware and/or the risk of fraud and hacking. It was recently estimated that 90% of the modified apps contained malware to allow 3rd parties to access the devices remotely and access user's details. A recent court judgement also highlighted that consumers risk criminal prosecution by using one of these devices to illegally stream content.

These type of services are often advertised via social media (you only have to check recent Blackwood and Kirkmuirhill FaceBook group posts!!! - Ed) or word of mouth as Firesticks or IPTV with enhanced or fully-loaded content (SKY movies, SKY Sports, BT TV, Premier Sports etc etc).

But in using these illegal services you are opening yourself up to data breach, scamming and funding illegal gangs.

See a recent report here.
SCAM - Fake Electrical Products

Electrical Safety First have warned of the dangers of buying hair clippers and other electrical beauty products through online marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay.
An investigation discovered several electric products did not meet UK safety standards, which could pose a risk of fire or electric shock.
Some items are sold with travel adaptors or dangerously small plugs which do not meet UK standards.
Some tips for buying electrical items online:
  • Be wary when buying electrical products from unknown websites or sellers, particularly if they are advertised at a price that is significantly cheaper than on official websites.
Car Crime Prevention Advice Relay Theft

A big thank you to the Police Scotland Edinburgh Prevention and Interventions Team for the below information.

Advice for Car Owners – ‘Relay Theft’
Increasingly we have seen instances whereby vehicle owners have had their car stolen yet they are still in possession of both keys and there are no signs of forced entry to the vehicle itself. This may suggest that criminals are using a technique called ‘relay theft’.

Relay Attack – How It Works

Each of the thieves carries a ‘relay box’ – a device that relays the signal from the car key to the car.

One attacker gets near enough to the key (in the house) to pick up the signal, ‘relays’ it to the second box carried by the second criminal, who’s near enough to the car for the signal to be transmitted to it and trigger the unlocking. The criminals are then free to drive away in the stolen car, and to replace the locks at a later date.

In theory, all cars with keyless entry systems are vulnerable to the attack, but criminals have mostly been going after Audi, BMW, Ford, Hyundai, Land Rover, Mercedes and Volkswagen cars.

Here are a few simple steps to minimise the risk of relay theft:

  • Keep your key device in a ‘Faraday pouch’ which has a lining that prevents the items inside from receiving or transmitting radio frequency signals.
  • Check vehicle doors are locked before walking away.
  • Listen for the central lock engaging and watch for indicators flashing when locking the car.
  • Do not store keys near windows or doors.
  • If you buy a second-hand keyless car, get the key reprogrammed.
  • Make sure the key and any spares are stored securely and safely.
  • Consider having an On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) lock professionally fitted.
  • Electronic OBD security is available – seek the main dealer’s advice.
  • Use a steering wheel lock.
  • Installation of a Pedal Box that encases the driving pedals in a high visibility secure box.

For further advice contact your local Crime Prevention Officer, or visit our website at:-
Safer Communities Safer Scotland booklet from Neighbourhood Watch Scotland at:-

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