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Advice and Information

Dudley Council the historic capital of the Black Country
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Friends Against Scams is a National Trading Standards Scams Team initiative which aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams by empowering communities to ‘Take a Stand Against Scams’.  With increased knowledge and awareness, people can make scams part of everyday conversation with their family, friends and neighbours, which will enable them to protect themselves and others from scams.

If you simply want to learn more about Scams you can complete the ‘friends against Scams’ online learning.  It is an excellent introduction to scams to increase your awareness of this type of crime, takes just 20 minutes and is available to all Dudley residents.

Please note you will need to register and activation takes 24 hours.  Please follow the instructions to register.

Join Dudley Scams Unit in the fight against scams, and become a Friend today

Scam champions

SCAMchampions are ‘Friends against Scams’ who do a little more. We have already trained a number of SCAMchampions within partner organisations and are always looking for more organisations to take advantage of this free training. It really isn’t an onerous task and can not only benefit people in the workplace but also their home-life. 

As the average age of a scam victim is 74 the SCAMchampion training also incorporates a ‘Dementia Friends’ information Session resulting in you also becoming a Dementia Friend. During this session you will increase your understanding of Dementia and think about the small things that you can do to make a difference to people affected by Dementia in your community. If you are already a ‘Dementia Friend’ there will be no need to complete the final hour of the training session.

If you would like to become a SCAMchampion on behalf of your organisation contact the Scams Unit for further details.

Friends against scams organisation

Dudley MBC became an official ‘Friends against Scams’ Organisation in November 2018, making a commitment to train staff as ‘Friends Against Scams’. If you would like your work place to become a Friends Against Scams Organisation get in touch with the Scams Unit who can advise you on how to achieve this.

Five key points about scams

  1. 53% of people aged 65+ have been targeted by scams and criminals. (Action Fraud)  
  2. Scams cost the UK roughly £5-10 billion each year. (Annual Fraud Indicator)
  3. Anyone can be a scam victim, regardless of age, gender, education or economic background.
  4. Scam victims might not always admit (or be aware) that they are a victim of a scam. Only 5% of victims report the crime. (Age UK 2015)
  5. Scams are the product of organised, predatory criminals who gain trust to exploit and steal money.

Scam marshalls

  • Are you, or someone you know, inundated with scam mail?
  • Are you tempted to respond to it?
  • Do you want to help track down the criminals behind scams and help put a stop to their activities?

If you answered yes to any of the above then why not become a Scam Marshal

What is a scam marshal?

A Scam Marshal is any resident in the UK who receives scam mail, but wants to put it to good use. Scam Marshals are responsible for collecting scam mail and sending it to the NTS Scams Team.

Why should I become a scam marshal?

Becoming a Scam Marshal can be very rewarding and fulfilling work. In many cases it has helped Scam Marshals to:

  • Save money
  • Take control of their situation
  • Improve self-confidence
  • Reduce clutter in the home
  • Assist with investigations
  • Reduce the temptation to respond
  • Increase awareness of scams
  • Educate and help others
  • See a reduction in scam mail

Are there any membership rewards?

Yes! All Scam Marshals will receive a certificate confirming their status. They will also receive a monthly newsletter in the post that will include enforcement updates, and sometimes special requests from our investigators.

Each month one Scam Marshal will have a spotlight feature as a Scam Marshal of the Month and have the chance to share their story.

Scam Marshals also have access to the Scam Marshal pen pal scheme where they can befriend other Scam Marshals when they send their post into NTS Scams Team.

If you would like to become a Scam Marshal please contact the Scams Unit.

Mail preference service

Although different to scam mail, if you are receiving unwanted mail you can sign up to the Mail Preference Service (MPS) – registration is free and only takes a few minutes.