The clocks go back next week and our message is simple, keep a light on and stay secure.
In the early hours of Sunday 29 October the clocks change and at this is the time of year there is an increase in burglary as the nights lengthen and daylight hours shorten.
On Sunday 22 October Sussex Police began a social media campaign to show how residents can bolster their home security with some practical crime prevention advice and highlight the impact of burglary can have.
We aim to emphasise the dire and sometimes heartbreaking effect a burglary can have on a person who has experienced it by sharing their personal story. These stories are complemented with helpful and practical tips to help safeguard your home against burglary. Everyone in the community can help prevent burglary by looking out for each other.
Between September 2016 and September 2017 there were on average 680 burglary offences per month across the force. This total includes both residential and non-residential burglaries.
The change of season not only brings longer evenings but the opportunity to be out celebrating bonfire events and Hallowe’en activities. Be mindful that your home could be vulnerable to burglary if it isn’t protected. The best defence against burglary is prevention.
Burglary isn’t only about the physical act of someone breaking in and stealing material possessions. It can have a profound and lasting emotional effect on the victim.
To help protect yourself please read our crime prevention advice here.
Register your belongings on the Immobilise national property register. It's free and takes just a few minutes and if your valuables are stolen it will allow you to tell the police, your insurer and secondhand traders to assist in recovering your property and catch the thief. Find out more on their website here.
Detective Chief Inspector Alasdair Henry,
Sussex Police burglary prevention
Seen something suspicious or have information about a crime or incident? Please contact us online, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 101.
Alternatively you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111, or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) and Action Fraud have recently noticed that Fraudsters have been setting up fake adverts on social media (including Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp) and job browsing websites to dupe people into believing they are recruiting for prospective models.
Once victims show interest in the job, the fraudsters contact potential victims on the false promise of a modelling career and subsequently advise the victims to come in for a test shoot.
The fraud can then potentially be carried out in two ways;
Firstly, the fraudsters can pressurise the victims in sending an upfront fee to book a slot for the test shoot. Once they have received the upfront fee, the victim will never hear from the fraudsters again.
The second possible method is that the fraudsters will take the advance fee that the victim sends for a photo shoot and arrange a photo shoot with the victim. After the photo shoot, the fraudsters will contact the victim after a few days and convince them that their shoot was successful and offer them a job as a model. The victim will then be asked to sign a contract and pay another upfront fee, usually to secure the modelling contract.
Fraudsters are also creating fake adverts for supposed modelling opportunities for children which do not exist. Fraudsters will inform parents or guardians that a potential career in modelling awaits their child. This tactic convinces the parent or guardian to sign up their child and send an advance fee.
The suspects will also convince the victim that in order to become a model, they will need to have a portfolio. The fraudsters will recommend a number of packages and stress that if a package is not paid for in advance, the process of becoming a model cannot continue.
Over a two year period (September 2015 – August 2017), an average of 28 reports of advance fee modelling frauds have been received per month by the NFIB. In August 2017, 49 Action Fraud reports of this fraud type were received and may continue to rise. The total loss in August 2017 alone was over £71,000.
Tips for staying safe:
- Carry out your own research prior to paying any type of advance or upfront fee.
- Be wary if you are asked to pay for a portfolio, as many legitimate agencies will cover that cost.
- Don't give your bank account details or sensitive information to anyone without carrying out your own research on the relevant agency.
- If you have been affected by this, or any other type of fraud, report it to Action Fraud by visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.
Serious road collision on the A26 from Lewes to Uckfield
Police are looking for the driver of a car who may have been a witness. Please click here to read the details in full.
Car stolen in Ringmer
Police are appealing for witnesses following the theft of a car from Ringmer which was then chased into Surrey. Click here to read the article and see if you can help.
News and appeals
Serious road crash on the A26, near Isfield on Thursday 13 July
Police are appealing for witness to a road collision on the A26 between Lewes and Uckfield yesterday, Thursday 13 July. Click here to read the full details.
Altercation between two drivers on the A27 near Lewes
Police are appealing for witnesses to an incident just outside Lewes on Tuesday 11 July. Click here to read the full details.
Illegal rave broken up by police
An illegal rave near Lewes was broken up by police last weekend. Click here to read the details.
Summer road safety warning
Police issue a summer road safety warning to users of Sussex Roads. Click here to read the full article.
PC Bernadette Lawrie is interviewed on the fight against scams
Click here to read the full interview about PC Lawrie’s work in the fight against scams, particularly focussing on the elderly.
Action Fraud has received the first reports of Tech-Support scammers claiming to be from Microsoft who are taking advantage of the global WannaCry ransomware attack.
One victim fell for the scam after calling a ‘help’ number advertised on a pop up window. The window which wouldn’t close said the victim had been affected by WannaCry Ransomware.
The victim granted the fraudsters remote access to their PC after being convinced there wasn’t sufficient anti-virus protection. The fraudsters then installed Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool, which is actually free and took £320 as payment.
It is important to remember that Microsoft’s error and warning messages on your PC will never include a phone number.
Additionally Microsoft will never proactively reach out to you to provide unsolicited PC or technical support. Any communication they have with you must be initiated by you.
How to protect yourself
- Don't call numbers from pop-up messages.
- Never allow remote access to your computer.
- Always be wary of unsolicited calls. If you’re unsure of a caller’s identity, hang up.
- Never divulge passwords or pin numbers.
- Microsoft or someone on their behalf will never call you.
If you believe you have already been a victim
- Get your computer checked for any additional programmes or software that may have been installed.
- Contact your bank to stop any further payments being taken.
Report fraud and cyber crime to Actionfraud.police.uk
There has been a series of recent incidents reported to Action Fraud where a lone fraudster has approached victims whom they believe to be unfamiliar with the local area. They make an excuse to talk to the victims such as enquiring about directions or offering a recommendation for a good hotel.
After this interaction, several other fraudsters will intervene purporting to be police officers in plain clothes and will sometimes present false identification as proof. The fake officers will then give a reason to examine the victims’ wallet, purse or personal items. They may also examine the first fraudster’s items or try to tell victims that the first fraudster is suspicious in order to gain victim trust and appear more realistic in their guise.
After all the fake police ‘checks’ are finished, victims have then reported being handed back their personal items only to later realise that a quantity of money or valuables were missing.
How to protect yourself:
- If an individual claims to be a police officer ask for their name and rank, force, and examine any identification presented; this is always good practice but especially important if they are not wearing a uniform.
- The Police will never ask for your passwords or PIN details. Do not give this information to anyone.
- The Police will never request that you withdraw/transfer any money to them or to a ‘safe’ account.
- If you have been affected by this, or any other fraud, report it to Action Fraud by visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk
Police are appealing for witnesses to an incident of criminal damage which occured in Springett Avenue, Ringmer, just after 2pm last Friday afternoon (21 April).
The driver of a delivery lorry, whilst unloading at the rear of the shops, was approached by a male resident who complained to him for parking there. The driver apologised, finished unloading, but then found he was prevented from leaving by the man’s black Jaguar parked across the back of the lorry. A verbal altercation followed but the lorry was eventually able to leave. But just after turning out into Springett Avenue, the same man ran over towards the lorry and threw a bottle at it, smashing the driver’s side window.
The suspect was described as being of Indian Asian appearance and wearing a grey top. Due to the earlier disagreement, it is believed he may be a resident of one of the flats above the Ganges Restaurant in the parade.
Several people were believed to have witnessed the episode and they are urged to come forward if they know who this man is, or with any other information relating to the incident.
Informants are asked to quote reference 782 of 21/4 when contacting either police or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 / online at crimestoppers-uk.org/