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‘Cold-Call’ Scams – Trading Standards Warn Businesses – 23/01/2008

Trading Standards Service today issued a new warning to businesses to be wary when ‘cold-called’ by traders.

Domain Scams, Trading Standards’ advice service, has received a number of complaints in recent weeks from businesses who have received correspondence from a trader called “Yellow Pages World Family”.


Domain Scams manager Stephen Thompson explained: “This particular scam requires companies to submit contact details along with a payment of £147 to place an advertisement. The request is on yellow paper headed “Yellow Pages World Family”, with logos similar to the genuine “Yellow Pages” trademarks.


“The request misspells cheque as “check”, and is accompanied by an envelope addressed to Yellow Pages World Family, 27 Old Gloucester Street, WC1N 3XX, UK.

“Trading Standards can confirm that this trader has no connection with the genuine Yellow Pages directory. I would advise anyone who receives correspondence from “Yellow Pages World Family” to disregard it, and report the matter to Domain Scams.”


Domain Scams has also received a number of queries from small businesses who have been ‘cold-called’ by a trader informing them that they have been nominated for an excellence award. In order to receive a certificate, the business is required to send money to the trader.


Domain Scams manager Stephen Thompson said: “While the business may receive a certificate in return for the payment, there is no official backing to this awards scheme – it appears to be simply a payment of around £120 for a worthless certificate.


“In general, our advice to businesses would be to avoid responding to any correspondence which requests upfront payment. Some local businesses have lost money to these traders. If you receive a demand for payment for something you have not ordered, or from someone with whom you have not previously done business, then you should treat it with the utmost suspicion.“


For further advice or information, or to report a ‘cold-caller’ or any other suspicious trader, contact Domain Scams on 0845 600 6262.

NOTES TO EDITORS:

  1. ‘Cold-calling’ is the term given to the approach by a salesperson to a prospective buyer either by telephone, in writing or in person, where no previous contact has been made.
  2. For media enquiries please contact Lesley Dempster in the DETI Press Office, telephone 028 9052 9297.
  3. Outside office hours, please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.

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