Welcome to the web presence of the Braeside and Mannofield Community Council.
Community Councils are statutory bodies, set up by an Act of Parliament. Their term of office is 3 years and they receive an annual grant from the City Council.
They have no executive powers although being close to and part of the local community they play a vital role in representing the views of the community to local authorities and other public bodies.
Anyone who lives within the Community Council area and whose name is on the electoral roll can be nominated or apply to become a Community Councillor.
There are also places for young people aged 16 and 17 years and other co-options are allowed.
The Braeside and Mannofield Community Council has an upper limit of 12 members.
For full information about Community Councils download the Aberdeen City Council Handbook from the document archive.

In compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation, Braeside and Mannofield Community Council have a data privacy policy. That policy can be viewed by clicking here

You can email us at bandmcommcouncil@gmail.com

Wednesday, 28 October 2020

Minutes of Meeting 27 October 2020

The Community Council was held on Tuesday 27 October 2020 using video conferencing. The minutes of that meeting can be viewed or downloaded by clicking here or by accessing through the Document Archive on the right.

The next meeting of the Community Council will also be a virtual meeting, held on the Zoom application. It will be on Tuesday 24 November 2020 and begin at 7pm prompt. 

Anyone wishing access to the meeting should email the Secretary who will advise on meeting ID codes and passwords.

As usual, we can still be contacted with queries or comments by sending an email to the Secretary - bandmcommcouncil@gmail.com

Tuesday, 27 October 2020

Parking Restrictions - Airyhall Avenue


Aberdeen City Council has notified us of the following parking restriction that will be in force in Airyhall Avenue.

From 7:30am on 9th November 2020 until 5pm on 8th January 2021. there will be no waiting along either side of Airyhall Avenue. These no-waiting restrictions will be demarcated by the use of no-waiting cones.

Illegally parked vehicles will be removed at the owner’s expense. The restrictions are in the interests of public safety during repairs works to the footways by Aberdeen City Council.

Thursday, 22 October 2020

Fire Safety Requirements - Update

We recently posted information about the changes that the Scottish Government intended to introduce in February 2020. The new law, which requires all homes in Scotland to have interlinked smoke alarms, will be delayed until 2022 following criticism over the lack of public awareness.

The Scottish government have said that MSPs will be asked to approve a 12-month delay to the smoke alarm rules that are to apply to all homes in Scotland

Housing minister Kevin Stewart said: "Given the impact of Covid-19, and the difficulties this is likely to create for people seeking to install new smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, we have listened to concerns and decided to ask the Scottish Parliament to delay implementation.

"If this delay is approved, we will continue to work with partners to spread awareness of the changes before the new deadline.  Our focus will be on supporting householders to ensure satisfactory fire alarms are installed so we can improve the safety of their homes."

Under the new legislation all home owners and landlords must ensure they have a ceiling-mounted smoke alarms in their living room, hallways and landings and all kitchens must have a heat alarm and, crucially, the system must be interlinked, either through fixed wiring or a wireless system.

Interlinking ensures that if one alarm is activated it will trigger all the others.  A stand alone carbon monoxide alarm must also be fitted where there is a fuel burning appliance or a flue.

Friday, 16 October 2020

Next Meeting - 27 October 2020

With social distancing and other considerations it is still difficult to hold a public meeting and ensure the safety of all attendees. The next meeting of the Community Council will, again, be a virtual meeting using the ZOOM video conferencing application.

If you live within the CC area, and would like to be a part of the meeting, then please drop the secretary an email and he will get back to you with the room ID and password.

The meeting will begin on-line at 7pm on Tuesday 27 October 2020

The Agenda can be downloaded by clicking here

New Fire Safety Regulations in Scotland - YOU need to take action

New Fire Safety Regulations are coming into force in February 2021. They affect all homes, both owned and rented and the obligation to comply with the Regulations lies with the owners and landlords of dwelling houses.

The new standard requires every home in Scotland to have :-

* one smoke alarm installed in the room most frequently used for general daytime living purposes
* one smoke alarm in every circulation space on each storey, such as hallways and landings
* one heat alarm installed in every kitchen

All the alarms should be ceiling-mounted and interlinked with each other.  In other words if one of the alarms is actuated, all the alarms sound.

Where there is a carbon-fuelled appliance (such as boilers, fires - including open fires - and heaters) or a flue, a carbon monoxide detector is also required which does not need to be linked to the fire alarms.

There are only about 3 months to go until the law comes into effect so now is the time to start looking at your house and either fitting and interlinked system OR contact your landlord to have one fitted.  If everyone leaves it to the last minute you may have difficulty purchasing the equipment or finding someone to fit it.

Police Scotland - Business Advice

Police Scotland have issued a "Business Watch Bulletin" for information

Sign Up for Neighbourhood Alert for free
A great way in which Police can share information is via the Neighbourhood Alert system, which is delivered by Neighbourhood Watch Scotland. This enables us to send out e-mail messages relating to local crime trends and share crime prevention advice quickly and effectively to a wide audience. The information can also be targeted to particular groups, streets, or communities as required. 
Anyone can sign-up to receive these e-mail messages, either individually or as a community group. The sign-up process allows you to specify the type of information you are interested in and from what source. This is co-ordinated by our partners in Neighbourhood Watch Scotland, who work with a range of partners in the public sector to provide information not only on crime, but also about community safety and resilience. We only send out messages which contribute to keeping you informed and safe. 

In these uncertain times, Neighbourhood Alert is recognised as a trusted source of information. Please consider taking a moment to sign-up for Neighbourhood Alert e-mail messages, and encourage family, friends and neighbours to do the same. Over 23,000 people across Scotland have joined so far, with more joining every day. You can join too, without setting up a Neighbourhood Watch.

Simply visit   www.neighbourhoodwatchscotland.co.uk

HMICS Inspection - Policing Response to Hate Crime

Please find below a link to a HMIC online inspection survey seeking the views of individuals, groups and communities regards the policing response(s) in relation to 'Hate Crime'. The survey was scheduled for earlier this year, however due to circumstances out with their control HMIC delayed the survey.

https://www.hmics.scot/news/hmics-seeks-your-views-police-investigation-hate-crime

Please note the survey has now been re-circulated and the closing date has now been extended to 12 noon on Friday 30 October 2020.

It would be greatly appreciated if you could share this link with your networks to gather further information on behalf of HMIC.

Theft of Golf Clubs

Police Scotland are advising golfers not to leave their clubs unattended following a number of thefts from outside golf clubs in the North East. Pro Shops at Golf Clubs are also being advised to review their security as a result of these incidents.

Crime Prevention Officer PC Mike Urquhart said ‘I would urge golfers to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity and persons near golf clubs. Between 1715 and 1815 hours on Friday 11 September 2020, golfing equipment valued at over £2000 was stolen from golf clubs in the Moray area.’

Anyone with information should contact Police Scotland on 101 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 quoting Police reference CF0207390920.

Student Safety
Starting university or college can mean some significant life changes - making new friends, studying in a new town, going out to new places and living independently for the first time. However, some of these changes could also increase your risk of becoming a victim of crime.  Start out in the safest way possible by following some simple advice from Police Scotland -https://www.scotland.police.uk/studentsafety

Hotel Refund Fraud
Two males recently attended at a hotel in Tayside to pay for a reservation made on Booking.com. On attempting to pay with a card, the transaction failed twice, male 1 then asked to pay using a virtual card and the card terminal was handed to him. The transaction went through on this occasion, however suspect 1 showed the staff member his receipt, which showed he had been charged £100 extra, and a refund was agreed.

The terminal code for carrying out a refund procedure was input by the staff member, and appears to have been seen by both males, who were showing an overly keen interest in the book containing the code. Both males then attended their room and approximately 10 mins later male 1 re-attended at the reception desk claiming that the TV in the room was not working, along with other distraction techniques. The staff member then went to the room to check the TV, leaving male 1 unattended at the reception desk.

At the close of day the staff member carried out the usual transaction checks and discovered a large sum had been refunded to male 1's card. CCTV checks showed the male had tampered with the device when left unattended at reception.

Telephone Banking Fraud
Police Scotland is warning people to be vigilant following reports of phone banking fraud. Just last week, three Scottish consumers had tens of thousands of pounds stolen from their bank accounts after receiving cold calls from someone claiming to be from the fraud team of their local bank branch. The scammers were able to clone the banks' phone numbers in order to appear genuine and asked the consumers to transfer money into a separate account.

According to the most recent fraud report from UK Finance, a total of £207.8 million was lost to authorised push payment (APP) fraud in the first half of 2020, when victims were persuaded to make bank transfers to online scammers they believed were genuine traders or service providers.

Police Scotland advise that you should never give any personal information or bank details to a cold caller, even if they seem to know some of your details already. Your bank will NEVER cold call and ask you to transfer money to another account.

Contact your bank immediately if you think you may have made a payment to a scammer or if you are worried that a fraudulent transaction has been made from your account. Use the phone number on your bank statement or a publicly listed number (don’t use a number given to you by a cold caller). To ensure that you are disconnected from the cold caller, phone another number such as 123 before phoning your bank or call them from another phone.

Report scams to Advice Direct Scotland and if you have been the victim of fraud, contact your bank immediately and report it to Police Scotland on 101.

Mystery Shopper Recruitment Scams

Fraudsters are targeting job-seekers with a recruitment scam that has already claimed 35 victims with losses totalling over £51,000. All of the victims have so far been from London.

The fraudsters use recruitment websites and apps to identify potential targets. The victim is then cold-called by someone claiming to be an employee of a mobile phone network. The caller explains to the victim that they will need to take part in a “mystery shopper” test in order to pass the recruitment process.

The victim is instructed to visit one of the mobile network’s high street stores and take out a phone contract using the victim’s own personal and financial details. They are assured that the contract will be cancelled after the recruitment process is completed.

Once the victim has successfully taken out the contract, they are directed to drop-off points to deliver the phone and SIM card to a ‘colleague’ of the caller. The victim is reassured that the contract will be terminated.

In reality, the victims will never hear from the suspects again, and are left liable for the mobile phone contract they were convinced to purchase. Some victims are also asked to move the “employer’s” money through their own bank accounts, putting them at risk of committing money laundering offences.

Investment Fraud - Clone Firms
Following warnings in July from fraud prevention service Cifas that savers may be more vulnerable to pension and investment fraud due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a pensioner from Paisley has lost tens of thousands of pounds in an online investment scam hers find out that their personal details have been used to take out loans, for which they are also now liable.

The woman believed that she was visiting the website of a legitimate bank and invested over £20,000, having being told that she would receive a 3% yield the following month. However, she had visited a 'clone' website and, when she contacted the real bank to enquire about her investment, they had no record of it.

Another pensioner from Bolton wanted to move some money into saving bonds and filled in his details on an online comparison site. He was then cold called by someone claiming to work for Aviva who offered him a deal, which he accepted. Thankfully, when he went to his bank to transfer money to the fraudsters, staff were suspicious and discovered that it was a scam.
Aviva have published a warning about fake websites and search engine adverts which use their name and logo to try to sell fake bonds to consumers. They have taken down 25 fake websites so far, but warn that scammers continue to set up new ones.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) have also published several warnings about clone firms who use the details of firms authorised by the FCA and target people in the UK. These fraudsters may cold call, email or use social media advertising to try to convince potential investors that they represent an authorised firm. They often copy the real firm's website and slightly alter the contact details.

Find out more about how clone firms operate and how to protect yourself from investment scams on the FCA's website.

Recent Phishing Scams
Parking Penalty Charge Notice
Supposedly from HM Courts and Tribunals Service, this email asks you to click a link to pay a Penalty Charge Notice - it does not give any details of the vehicle used or location of the supposed offence.
Penalty charge notices will not be issued in this way and emails relating to parking charges in Scotland would come from the Scottish Courts and Tribunal Service.

DVLA - Driving Licence Details Update / Vehicle Tax Payment Due
Two fake DVLA emails - one of which states that your profile information needs to be updated and asks you to click on a link and enter personal details including your address and date of birth. The other email says that a recent vehicle tax payment has failed and that you will be fined unless you click on a link to update your payment details.  The DVLA will not email and ask you to confirm your payment or personal details via a link.

PayPal Text
A text supposedly from PayPal saying that to avoid having your account suspension, you have to click on a link to accept their new terms and conditions.  If you need to take action in relation to your account, PayPal will use the secure message service within accounts to send you a message.

TV Licensing Email
An email saying that your TV Licence payment could not be automatically renewed and asking you to click on a link to renew your licence.  TV Licensing will only email customers about payments if they have missed one and will not ask you to provide card details until you have signed in on their official website: www.tvlicensing.co.uk.

Halifax Email
An email saying that some of your account information is missing or incorrect and asking you to click on a link to update your details. It says that if you don't do this within 2 days, your account will be suspended.  Genuine messages from Halifax will not use warning messages or threats in this way.

According to Microsoft's annual Digital Defence Report, cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated and have evolved new phishing attacks to prey on people's anxieties and uncertainties during the Covid-19 pandemic. In 2019, over 13 billion malicious or suspicious emails were blocked, many of which imitated well-known brands or companies in an attempt to harvest people's personal details.   If you receive any similar emails, you can report them to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or through their website. 


For up-to-date information on scams and cyber-related crimes and crime prevention tips, check out the following monthly bulletin: https://cyberscotlandweek.com/news
or sign up to receive updates at https://scot.us3.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=95521127d4a8eebda241ca1b6&id=243ff3773b

CRIMESTOPPERS - https://crimestoppers-uk.org/   Tel. 0800 555 111
Crime Reduction Unit, North East Division, Police Scotland, 230 Abbotswell Crescent, Aberdeen, AB12 3JT
Email: NorthEastCrimeReduction@scotland.pnn.police.uk
Website: www.scotland.police.uk
Twitter: www.twitter.com/NorthEPolice
Facebook: www.facebook.com/NorthEastPoliceDivision

Police Scotland's North East Division covers rural and urban areas in Moray, Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City. The division has five territorial command areas which have their own dedicated Area Commander, who is responsible for the daily policing function. Each command area is served by a number of community policing teams whose activities are built around the needs of the local community. These teams respond to local calls and look for long term solutions to key issues. They are assisted by the division's Crime Reduction Unit who deliver against Force and local priorities in a number of areas, including physical and social crime prevention, supporting and enhancing community engagement and creating and sustaining strong and effective partnership working.

Wednesday, 30 September 2020

Airyhall PTA - Fundraising Quiz Night

Airyhall Primary School Parent Teacher Association are holding their first fund raising even  of the year.

A "virtual" quiz is being organised for Friday 2nd October 2020 and will use the "ZOOM" app/website.

The cost to take part is only £5.00 per family and you should pay this in advance via PayPal to airyhallpta@outlook.com or by bank transfer to 87-34-12 00007661 (if paying by BACS, please email the PTA at airyhallpta@outlook.com or drop them a message on Facebook with your email address!). The cut off for signing up is 3.30pm on Friday.

Details of how to log into the quiz, Zoom details and the picture round questions will be sent out by email on Friday afternoon to all registered teams. The quiz will start at 6.30 sharp, with plenty questions for the kids as well as the grown ups! Prizes will be awarded to the top 3 scoring teams!

What a great way to spend a Friday evening AND help a good cause at the same time.

Road Closure - Craigielea Avenue

Between 8am on Monday 12 October and 5pm on Friday 23 October 2020, Cragielea Avenue will be closed to traffic and there will be no parking on either side of the road.  

The restrictions are in lace to allow footway resurfacing to take place.

Illegally parked vehicles will be removed at the owners’ expense. 

An alternate route is available via Craigton Road, Kenfield Crescent, Countesswells Road and vice versa.

Police Report - September 2020

This is the latest report from our Local Community Policing Unit

COVID 19 – UPDATE
In relation to the COVID 19 restrictions Police Scotland follow an ENGAGE, EXPLAIN, ENCOURAGE and ENFORCE approach. What this means practically is that when breaches are reported to us we will follow each step in order to resolve the breach with any enforcement action being the last resort. We continue to receive calls in relation to this and adopt the above approach.

Community Policing Priorities
Antisocial behaviour, Violence and Disorder: 
On Friday 11th September officers carried out a Drugs Search Warrant at an address in the Craigielea Avenue area after receiving various reports of alleged drug dealing. As a result a person has been warned in regards possession of controlled drugs.

In the early evening of Saturday 19th September Police received reports of a large group of youths being loud and abusive around Airyhall Primary School and the Craigton Road area. No descriptions were passed or complaints made by callers.  Police attended the area but no youths were traced.

Your local officers continue to patrol area’s known to have issues with anti-social behaviour, where duties permit and will deal with any offences detected robustly.

On Monday 21st September Police responded to reports of youths on the roof at Braeside Primary School, youths were traced, parents advised and details passed to our Early Interventions team.

Acquisitive Crime:
No incidents of acquisitive crime have been recorded over the reporting period. However, I would encourage all members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to Police on 101 or 999 if an emergency, remembering to provide as much detail/descriptions of persons as possible.

Road Safety & Road Crime:
There were no incidents of note during the period in relation to road safety and road crime.

We continue to work with partners in response to specific complaints in terms of road traffic offences and to make use of antisocial behaviour legislation. Residents in the areas affected by antisocial driving are encouraged to contact Police on 101 at the time to report incidents in order for us to take positive action.

Community Engagement & Reassurance
The Banking Protocol

The Banking Protocol is an initiative between the police, banking institutions & Trading Standards.
Its aim is, at the earliest opportunity, to identify vulnerable victims who are in the process of being defrauded of funds from their bank accounts by unscrupulous criminals and to intervene to prevent these crimes. 

Victims, particularly elderly and other vulnerable people are targeted by suspects for a range of fraud offences, including courier fraud and bogus worker offences. These crimes often involve the perpetrator encouraging the victim to attend their bank, post office or other financial services provider in person and withdraw or transfer cash. On many occasions the perpetrator will accompany the victim in order to make the cash withdrawal or transfer.

If bank staff think the transaction is out of character you might be asked: 

  • What is the money going to be used for?
  • Who are you giving the money to?
  • Was this withdrawal or transaction planned or unexpected?
  • Have you had a call or been approached, claiming you have been a victim of fraud or offered an investment?
  • Have you been contacted by someone claiming they are Police, bank staff or a trader?
If staff suspect you are being coerced or the transaction is a as a result of fraud, the transaction is highlighted and the Police are contacted.

The Protocol is designed to provide a standardised method for how these concerns are dealt with and reported to police and to stop multiple victimisation.

For more information on financial fraud visit www.financialfraudaction.org.uk

Follow us on Twitter @NorthEPolice #WestEndCPT 

Also available are the three following contact email addresses for the West End:

Contact Us
Please also remember you can communicate with us using any of the following:
  101 – Non emergency
  Web – www.scotland.police.uk
  999 – Emergency
  0800 555 111 - Crimestoppers

Minutes of Meeting - 22 September 2020

The Community Council held a "Virtual" Meeting Tuesday 22 September 2020. The minutes of that meeting can be viewed or downloaded by clicking here.


The minutes of the meeting can be viewed by clicking here or by accessing through the Document Archive on the right.

The next meeting of the Community Council will also be a virtual meeting, held on the Zoom application.  It will be on Tuesday 27 October 2020 and begin at 7pm prompt.

All Welcome

As usual, we can still be contacted with queries or comments by sending an email to the Secretary - bandmcommcouncil@gmail.com

Wednesday, 9 September 2020

Virtual Meeting - 22nd September 2020

The Community Council are going to try and hold it's first meeting since the COVID19 pandemic.  Obviously with social distancing and other considerations, it would be difficult to hold a face-to-face meeting and ensure the safety of all attendees.  So it is intended that this, the first meeting since February will be a virtual meeting using the ZOOM video conferencing application.

If you live within the CC area, and would like to be a part of the meeting, then please drop the secretary an email and he will get back to you with the room ID and password.

The meeting will begin on-line at 7pm on Tuesday 22 September 2020

The Agenda can be downloaded by clicking here

Wednesday, 2 September 2020

Police Report - August 2020

This month, our local Community Policing Team have sent this update.

COVID 19 – UPDATE
In relation to the COVID 19 restrictions Police Scotland follow an ENGAGE, EXPLAIN, ENCOURAGE and ENFORCE approach.  What this means practically is that when breaches are reported to us we will follow each step in order to resolve the breach with any enforcement action being the last resort.  We continue to receive calls in relation to this and adopt the above approach.

A Route Map has been published setting out our plans for easing Scotland's coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions in four phases.  Scotland remains in Phase 3 of moving out of lockdown, with changes being introduced in stages.

Locally we moved out of the local restrictions as of Wednesday 26th August and everyone should follow the Government staying safe guidance.

Community Policing Priorities
Antisocial behaviour, Violence and Disorder:  
On the 12th August officers attended Airyhall Primary regarding alleged ongoing vandalism to the school.  Officers found no damage and engaged with a group of youths present who were playing in the grounds.  There were no concerns.

On 28th August officers were called to reports of a suspicious male near Airyhall Primary.  Enquiries established that the male in question has learning difficulties and that the incident is now concluded with No Crime having been committed.  Partner agencies have been updated and are providing the appropriate support. 

Your local officers continue to patrol area’s known to have issues with anti-social behaviour, where duties permit and will deal with any offences detected robustly.

Acquisitive Crime:
No incidents of acquisitive crime have been recorded over the reporting period.


I would encourage all members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to Police on 101 or 999 if an emergency, remembering to provide as much detail/descriptions of persons as possible.   

Road Safety & Road Crime:
There were no incidents of note during the period in relation to road safety and road crime. 
We continue to work with partners in response to specific complaints in terms of road traffic offences and to make use of antisocial behaviour legislation.  Residents in the areas affected by antisocial driving are encouraged to contact Police on 101 at the time to report incidents in order for us to take positive action. 

Community Engagement & Reassurance
Summer Safety
2020 is certainly going to be a summer to remember. The coronavirus pandemic has markedly changed our society. With many of us working and spending more time at home, outdoor leisure has become an important part of daily life.

As coronavirus restrictions ease and bars, restaurants and holiday accommodation reopen, personal safety becomes even more important.

Here are a few tips to help you have a safe and enjoyable summer, whether you are at home, at the beach or in the pub. 

Anti-social behaviour
We want you to have a great summer and enjoy sunbathing in the park or having a drink in your garden, but please remember to be considerate of others and respectful of your surroundings.

Be responsible and have a safe summer by:
  • Always being considerate of your actions and the actions of your family and friends on others who may live nearby or who are enjoying time in the same area.

  • Being mindful of your surroundings. Shouting, swearing, rowdy behaviour and loud music may be fun for you however may cause fear, alarm and distress to others.
  • Binning your litter when you leave, be kind to our environment and keep Scotland beautiful.
  • Keeping your dog on the lead and under control.
  • Never carrying a weapon. If caught, you will be arrested and prosecuted. Criminal records for violence make it harder to get into college or university as well as going on holiday.
  • Remembering that violent crime can affect anyone and innocent bystanders can get caught in the middle of other people’s disputes and suffer trauma, serious injuries or worse.
Alcohol
With beer gardens and bars now open, many of us are looking forward to a night out with friends. However, it is important to drink responsibly and put your safety and the safety of others first.
Overindulgence in alcohol can impact on your behaviour, your mind and your self-control. Drinking too much can make you vulnerable to becoming a victim of crime as well as getting involved in altercations which can ruin two lives.

Be responsible and have a safe summer by:
  • Knowing your alcohol limits.
  • Drinking plenty water, eating food and staying with friends. Never leave a drink unattended.
  • Making sure you and your friends have return journeys planned.
  • Not accepting a lift from anyone purporting to be a taxi driver if they do not have the correct license in place. Consider pre-booking your journey in advance.
  • Keeping your personal belongings safe at all times.
  • Being aware of local drinking laws in your council which can make it an offence to drink alcohol or have an open container of alcohol in a public area.
Secure your home
With holiday accommodation now open in Scotland and many of us booking local getaways, it is even more important to secure your home.
Although we are spending more time at home, it is still important to remember to secure your home when you are outside enjoying the sunshine.
Many thieves are actually opportunists who do not have to break in at all because a door or window has been left open or unlocked.

For more information visit the Home and Personal Property section of Police Scotland website.

Be responsible and have a safe summer by:
  • Locking the front door and windows when sunbathing in the back garden.
  • Locking all doors and windows when going out.
  • Remember to lock all sheds and outbuildings after gardening.
  • Never leaving keys on the inside of door locks, under mats or anywhere else an intruder may easily find them. Don’t keep house keys and car keys on the same key ring.
  • Not leaving valuables in sight of windows.
  • Avoiding keeping large amounts of cash in the house. If you must then disperse it in various locations.
  • Security marking your property with a UV marker pen, which you can use to place an invisible imprint of your postcode and house number on your possessions.
  • Recording details of your valuables, such as mobile phone, cameras, laptops and tablets on the national mobile property register at Immobilise.com.
  • If you have a wall calendar, avoid mounting it near a window from where appointments can potentially be seen. This may give an indication of when a property will be empty.
Staying safe outdoors
Spending time outdoors has become more important than ever before. Everyone wants to see our countryside and enjoy our waterways and coastline.


Remember, any area of water, including reservoirs and canals, can hold hidden dangers. Scotland has more than 37,000 separate stretches of inland water and over 11,500 miles of coastline when including both mainland and island coast.

With many stretches located in remote areas, help will often be some considerable time away, so take responsibility for your own actions and make sensible decisions to stay safe around waterways.

Be responsible and enjoy a safe summer by:
  • Being aware of the dangers when out hillwalking, cycling or near areas of water.
  • Think about the risks and plan to minimise them.
  • Never underestimating the current, temperature or depth when in water.
  • Never get into the water alone and don’t go swimming after drinking alcohol.
  • If you get in trouble in water, float to live.
  • You can find out more about inland water safety from our partners Scottish Water.
  • To get more information about how to enjoy sea sports and Scotland’s coastline safely, get advice from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and HM Coastguard, and general advice about water safety is also available from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA).
  • If you see someone in difficulty or at risk at sea or along the coast always dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.
Follow us on Twitter @NorthEPolice #WestEndCPT 

Also available are the three following contact email addresses for the West End:

Contact Us
Please also remember you can communicate with us using any of the following:
  101 – Non emergency
  Web – www.scotland.police.uk
  999 – Emergency
  0800 555 111 - Crimestoppers



Thursday, 13 August 2020

Unsolicited Seeds

There are reports of people receiving packages of seeds that they have never ordered. This is an urgent update from the National Farmers Union (Scotland) for anyone receiving such a a package

"Significant numbers of Scottish households have been receiving unsolicited packets of seeds in the post from China/Singapore as part of a likely scam.  Following contact with Scottish Government, it urges those receiving seeds to take the following actions.

If the packet of seeds has not been opened, please leave it sealed.

• DO NOT PLANT OR COMPOST THESE SEEDS.
It is possible that these seeds could be a harmful invasive species or harbour a disease both of which if released could pose a threat to agriculture and the environment.

• DO NOT HANDLE THE SEEDS
These seeds may have been treated with a chemical pesticide. Please wash your hands if you have handled them without gloves.

Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture (SASA) is collecting these unsolicited packets of seeds for analysis. It is asking for your co-operation to send these seeds to SASA.  Should you receive a packet of seed then Email your details and a postal address to info@sasa.gov.scot

You will be sent a pre-paid self-addressed envelope and zip-lock bag. When you receive the envelope and zip-lock bag please insert the packet of seeds into the zip-lock bag and seal. Then place the zip-lock bag and contents into the envelope and post it back to SASA.

If you receive further unsolicited packages, please report them again using info@sasa.gov.scot


Monday, 10 August 2020

Aberdeen Lockdown Restrictions - Fuller Information

The Scottish Government has issued the information below for the guidance of those of us living and working in Aberdeen.

"Following an increase in coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Aberdeen, local advice on travel and indoor gatherings between households has changed.

Measures have also been taken to close indoor and outdoor hospitality in the Aberdeen City local authority area, from 5pm on 5 August.


The restrictions will be reviewed in 7 days.

Restrictions on businesses
Businesses offering food or drink for consumption on the premises - such as pubs, restaurants, bars and cafes - must cease to offer this service.

Any outdoor seating such as tables or picnic areas next to a business counts as part of the premises, whether provided by the business or not.

Businesses are permitted to sell food or drink to take away, provided it is consumed off the premises.

Hotels and acc
ommodation providers can offer room service, but must close hotel bars. Hotel restaurants may only open to provide food to staff and guests of the hotel.

Other sectors should continue to follow Phase 3 guidance, and be extra vigilant about hygiene and physical distancing.

Travel
People in Aberdeen City are asked not to travel more than 5 miles for leisure or recreational purposes. This includes to take holidays in other parts of Scotland or the UK.

Non-essential overseas travel continues to be advised against.

People are advised not to travel to Aberdeen for leisure purposes or to visit friends and family, unless part of an extended household, while the restrictions are in place

Travel for essential purposes, such as work that cannot be done from home, education or for medical treatment, may continue.

Gatherings
People in Aberdeen City are asked not to meet other households indoors for leisure or recreational purposes, unless part of an extended household. You can still meet people outdoors.

If people are already in Aberdeen visiting family or on holiday then they do not need to leave but are asked to follow the recommendations in this guidance and take extra care when returning home.

Care homes and hospitals
Indoor visits to hospitals and care homes should be limited to essential visits only.

Outdoor visits to care homes are permitted by one designated person, in line with current guidance.

Hospital visiting will be restricted to the lockdown visiting rules and will be limited to:

· a birth partner during childbirth
· for a person receiving end-of-life care
· to support someone with a mental health issue such as dementia, a learning disability or autism where not being present would cause the patient to be distressed
· to accompany a child in hospital

Shielding
Shielding was paused on 1 August and is not being re-instated at this time. People who had been shielding should consider the number of people they are in contact with, and strictly follow physical distancing and hygiene measures. You may also want to think about the levels of risk associated with work and daily activities.

We know this might be a particularly anxious time for you if you were previously asked to shield. The clinical advice is that you do not need to shield. However, we are keeping the situation under constant review and will not hesitate to change our advice if we think we need to.

For those going back to work, our assessment of the evidence is that we do not yet need to change our advice to those coming out of shielding or going back to work. However, we continue to urge all employers to support staff to work from home wherever possible, and we urge employers to take particular account of those who were shielding, especially now when we are urging vigilance.

Bars linked to the Aberdeen outbreak
If you have recently been to any of the bars named, you should only book a test if you have symptoms. Our test and protect system continues to trace people who were in close contact with identified cases. If you are contacted you should self-isolate for 14 days. Getting a test which comes back as ‘not detected’ when you do not have symptoms will not remove the need to self-isolate.

List of bars linked to the Aberdeen outbreak

· The Bieldside Inn            · Bobbin                    · Brewdog, Castlegate            · Buckie Farm Carvery
· Cafe Andaluz                  · Cafe Dag                 · Cafe Drummond                  · The Cock & Bull
· College Bar                     · The Daft Project     · Dutch Mill                           · Dyce Farm
· East End Social Club      · Ferryhill House      · Hawthorn/Adam Lounge     · The Howff
· The Justice Mill              · The Marine Hotel    · McGinty's                            · McNastys
· Malmaison                      · Moonfish Cafe         · No. 10 Bar                          · O'Donoghues
· Old Bank Bar                  · Prohibition              · Soul                                     · Spiders Wed


The following leisure settings have also been named:

· Banks O'Dee Football Club    · Aboyne Golf Club    · Deeside Golf Club    · Hazelhead Golf Club

Schools and early learning and childcare settings
These measure will not affect the re-opening of schools from 11 August. One of the purposes of these measures is to ensure that schools are able to re-open.

The risks of opening schools are small, while the benefits to children and wider society of returning to school are large.

As we have not changed our advice to shield, children who are shielding should still be able to return when schools reopen – though, as with all our shielding advice, we will keep this under review. 

Economy and employment
Restrictions are largely limited to the hospitality sector within the city of Aberdeen. Other sectors should follow current phase 3 guidelines. 

All business
es in the Aberdeen City area should however close workplace canteens unless there is no practical alternative for staff to obtain food, and if physical distancing and other hygiene requirements can be maintained.

We understand the impact these measures will have on individuals and businesses. We would emphasise that where a business has brought staff off furlough, those staff can be re-furloughed, as part of the Jobs Retention Scheme.

We continue to urge all employers to support staff to work from home wherever possible.

Hospitality workers
We understand the impact these measures will have on individuals and businesses. We would emphasise that where a business has brought staff off furlough, those staff can be re-furloughed, as part of the Jobs Retention Scheme.

Workers who have previously been furloughed can be re-furloughed at any point until October 31 - it's a decision for employer (and employee) and they don't need to explain the rationale to HMRC, they just claim the hours each employee has been furloughed for.

Off-shore workers
Restrictions are largely limited to the hospitality sector. There are no special provisions regarding off-shore workers but we recognise that many travel from afar to work, staying in hotels before going off-shore. This is a factor in keeping city hotels and hotel restaurants open.

Sport
The Scottish Premier League (SPL) home fixture on Wednesday 12 August will go ahead. SPL football clubs, and ancillary staff, are currently operating within a sporting bubble, supported by regular COVID-19 testing and robust guidance to ensure the virus is not brought in, or transmitted, through that environment.

Places of worship
At this stage no changes have been made to the operation of places of worship, however this will remain under review as work is undertaken to control the outbreak.

Further information
Businesses required to close are set out in the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (Aberdeen City) Regulations 2020.

If you have coronavirus symptoms get a test and stay at home.

If you are concerned, remember to follow the FACTS advice.


Covid-19 – Aberdeen City – FAQ - 5th August 2020

Why is Aberdeen going into lockdown?
We are placing some restrictions on the area of Aberdeen City due to an increase in numbers of people testing positive with covid-19 in the Aberdeen area. The increase in cases has mainly been in Aberdeen City, however the nature of travel in the North East has identified a potential risk across a wider area. We are therefore providing guidance to those who could be highest at risk.

When do the restriction begin and how long will these restrictions last?
These restrictions apply from 5 pm on Wednesday August 5. The regulations which stipulate the restrictions on hospitality – and the associated guidance and advice – will be reviewed in seven days.

Where do the restrictions apply?
These restrictions apply to the Aberdeen City Local Authority, if you are unsure if this applies, you can use this postcode lookup facility to determine your local authority:
https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council

What bars are linked to the outbreak?
See the list above.

I went to one of the bars named, do I need to get tested?
You should only book a test if you have symptoms. Our test and protect system continues to trace people who were in close contact with identified cases. Should you be contacted please self-isolate for 14 days, please note that Getting a test which comes back as ‘not detected’ when you do not have symptoms will not remove the need to self-isolate

I’m concerned about these cases; what should I do?
Remember the FACTS advice and most importantly follow it stringently.

Always wear a face covering in shops and public transport etc. Avoid crowded places. Clean your hands regularly. Keep a 2 meter distance from people outside your household. If you do have symptoms self-isolate and arrange to get tested immediately so that anyone you have been in contact with can be looked after as well.

Where and when can I travel?
Travel for essential purposes, such as work that cannot be done from home, education or for medical treatment, may continue. People in Aberdeen City are asked not to travel more than five miles for leisure or recreational purposes. People are advised not to travel to Aberdeen while the restrictions in place.

Anyone already in Aberdeen visiting family or on holiday may stay, but they should follow all the guidance and take extra care when they return home.

Can I still go on my planned holiday abroad?
People in Aberdeen should not be travelling to other parts of Scotland or the UK on holiday at this time, just as people from other parts of Scotland should not be travelling to Aberdeen for leisure.

In terms of international holidays, although it is possible for people to travel - we continue to advise everyone in Scotland against non-essential overseas travel right now and that remains the case.

Can I visit my family and friends?
People in Aberdeen City are asked not to meet other households indoors or travel more than five miles for leisure or recreational purposes including children. Extended household arrangements can continue but those are situations which should only involve one other adult who is living on their own. You can meet people outdoors.

Can people living alone meet other households?
A person who lives alone, or lives only with children under 18, can, if all adults in the household agree, form an ‘extended household group’ with that household. This would mean the people in the extended household can spend time together inside each other’s’ homes and not need to stay 2 metres apart.

I share parenting. Does this stop me from being able to form an extended household with another household?
The fact that someone shares parenting does not in itself prevent a person forming an extended household group with another household, as long as they meet all of the criteria set out in the guidance for extended households.

Can I still visit a relative in hospital or care home?
One designated person can continue outside visiting a care home setting in line with the current guidance.

Hospital visiting will be restricted to the lockdown visiting rules and will be limited as outlined above.

Can I still attend places of worship including weddings and funerals?
At this stage no changes have been made to the operation of places of worship, however this will remain under review as work is undertaken to control the outbreak.

Will the Aberdeen FC games go ahead?
Yes, the Scottish Premier League (SPL) home fixture on Wednesday 12 August will go ahead. SPL football clubs, and ancillary staff, are currently operating within a sporting bubble, supported by regular COVID testing and robust guidance to ensure the virus is not brought in, or transmitted, through that environment.

Should I go back into shielding?
We are not advising people to start shielding again. It is however important to consider the number of people you are in contact with, and be particularly vigilant about following public health guidance on physical distancing and hygiene measures. If you have been in contact with anyone who tests positive, you will have already been contacted through the test and protect service and should therefore be isolating.

Why am I not being advised to shield?
We know this might be a particularly anxious time for you if you were previously asked to shield. The clinical advice is that you do not need to shield. However, we are keeping the situation under constant review and will not hesitate to change our advice if we think we need to.

Should I still send my child to school next week?
Yes, schools in Aberdeen continue to plan for reopening next week. The risks of opening schools are small, while the benefits to children and wider society of returning to school are large. A major reason we are introducing more restrictions is so that we can still reopen schools. We want to strongly emphasise zero tolerance of anyone with symptoms attending schools and ELC settings; and that it’s essential for anyone who’s returning from an overseas country not on the ‘safe’ list, to quarantine for 14 days.

As we have not changed our advice to shield, children who are shielding should still be able to return when schools reopen – though, as with all our shielding advice, we will keep this under review.

Will this affect the re-opening of schools?

No. One of the purposes of these measures is to ensure that schools are able to reopen.

What does this mean for my business?
We understand the impact these measures will have on individuals and businesses. We would emphasise that where a business has brought staff off furlough, those staff can be re-furloughed, as part of the Jobs Retention Scheme.

We continue to urge all employers to support staff to work from home wherever possible.

Do I need to close my business?
Businesses offering food or drink for consumption on the premises – such as pubs, restaurants, bars and cafes- must cease to offer this service. Hotels and accommodation providers can offer room service and Hotel restaurants can remain open to provide food for hotel guests.

Takeaway services can continue to sell food or drink, provided it is consumed off the premises., but must close bars or restaurants.

Any outdoor seating area next to a business counts as part of the premises, whether provided by the business or not.

Anyone running other types of business in this area should be extra vigilant about hygiene and physical distancing, in line with existing guidance.

What does this mean for other sectors?
Restrictions are limited to hospitality sector. All other sectors should follow current phase 3 guidelines.

Is it still safe for me to go back to work?
Our assessment of the evidence is that we do not yet need to change our advice to those coming out of shielding or going back to work. However, we continue to urge all employers to support staff to work from home wherever possible, and we urge employers to take particular account of those who were shielding, especially now when we are urging vigilance.

I work in the hospitality sector, will I still be paid?
We understand the impact these measures will have on individuals and businesses. We would emphasise that where a business has brought staff off furlough, those staff can be re-furloughed, as part of the Jobs Retention Scheme.

Workers who have previously been furloughed can be re-furloughed at any point until October 31 - it's a decision for employer (and employee) and they don't need to explain the rationale to HMRC, they just claim the hours each employee has been furloughed for.

What does this mean for off-shore workers?
There are no special provisions regarding workers in this sector but we recognise that many travel from afar to work off-shore, staying in hotels before going offshore. The frequent presence of such sectoral workers in hotels is a factor in keeping hotels and hotel restaurants open.

Do the travel restrictions on recreation/leisure include visiting shops or collection points?
No, but we are continuing to monitor the situation and will review the restrictions in 7 days.

Do you expect the restrictions to include in-home deliveries and installation services or, as with the additional measures in Greater Manchester etc., will these services be permitted?
No, but we are continuing to monitor the situation and will review the restrictions in 7 days.

Wednesday, 5 August 2020

COVID19 - Aberdeen Lockdown Restrictions

The Scottish government, in line with the local health team and Aberdeen City Council, has agreed the following new advice:

  • People should not travel more than five miles for leisure purposes
  • Travelling for work or education is permitted, but other travel is not advised
  • Do not travel to Aberdeen
  • Do not go into each others’ houses (with the exception of extended household groups)
  • All indoor and outdoor hospitality in the city to close tonight, which will be enforced if necessary


This is the official notification from Aberdeen City Council.  Please keep yourselves (and others) safe and follow the guidelines.  


The Scottish Government lockdown will be reviewed next week and we will publish any updates on this website.


If you have concerns there are various places to get advice.  If you use the following link it takes you to the City Council page on COVID-19. https://www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/services/coronavirus-covid-19

Temporary Traffic Order - Deeside Park

From 7.30am on 11 August 2020 until 5pm on 18 August Deeside Park will be closed to traffic. 

The closure is being put in place whilst resurfacing work is being carried out by Aberdeen City Council

Police Report - July 2020

This report covers progress made by our Community Policing Team in dealing with the policing priorities for our Community Council area during June 2020.

COVID 19 – UPDATE
In relation to the COVID 19 restrictions Police Scotland follow an ENGAGE, EXPLAIN, ENCOURAGE and ENFORCE approach. What this means practically is that when breaches are reported to us we will follow each step in order to resolve the breach with any enforcement action being the last resort. We continue to receive calls in relation to this and adopt the above approach.

A Route Map has been published setting out our plans for easing Scotland's coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions in four phases.

Scotland moved to Phase 3 of moving out of lockdown on 10 July, with changes being introduced in stages.

Community Policing Priorities
Antisocial behaviour, Violence and Disorder: 
Police continue to actively patrol area’s know for anti-social behaviour and will deal with any offences detected. On the 11th July Police were called the Morningside area regarding a large group of youths causing issues, however on Police attendance there was no trace of the group.

Officers are making enquiries into a minor assault that occurred in the Airyhall area on the 18th July when one man punched another. This appears an isolated incident where alcohol has been involved.

Officers are investigating a smashed window at Braeside primary School during the hours on darkness on the 24th July.  On the same night, the vandalism to a vehicle that was scratched in several places was made and is being investigated.

Officers attended reports of a noisy party in the small hours of 26th July in the Countesswells Road area and dispersed same, providing suitable advice to all - particularly the occupants.

Acquisitive Crime:
Only one incident of acquisitive crime has been reported this month. On the 24th July, a man in his 60’s entered a garden/yard area of a business near the Marcliffe of Pitfodels Hotel and carried off a bucket containing planks of wood. Enquiries are ongoing.

We would encourage all members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to Police on 101 or 999 if an emergency, remembering to provide as much detail/descriptions of persons as possible.

Road Safety & Road Crime:
There were no incidents of note during the period in relation to this. We continue to work with partners in response to specific complaints in terms of road traffic offences and to make use of antisocial behaviour legislation.  Residents in the areas affected by antisocial driving are encouraged to contact Police on 101 at the time to report incidents in order for us to take positive action.

Community Engagement & Reassurance
We mentioned Scam prevention in previous reports. 

Following our roll out of free call blocking devices, we received an unprecedented volume of applications and all units have now been allocated. We're sorry if you missed your chance to apply - any updates will be posted on Trading Standards website and social media accounts.

It's more important than ever to make sure that you stay Scam Aware and that you share information about scams with vulnerable relatives or friends.   Stay safe while online at home and report all scams to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000. Report scam emails to the National Cyber Security Centre.

Travel Compensation Scams
Fraud prevention service Cifas are warning travellers to be wary of fraudsters posing as staff from travel companies, tour operators or insurers and offering to refund or rebook cancelled holidays. Scammers are also setting up fake websites offering refunds and compensation to holidaymakers. This follows warnings of fake caravan listings, refund offers and travel deals from banking industry body UK Finance earlier this month.

As Scottish consumers continue to report issues related to holiday/travel refunds and cancellations,  fraudsters are taking advantage of their uncertainty. There may be an increase in companies offering to obtain refunds or compensation for cancelled trips during the Covid-19 pandemic.

One claims management firm is now facing prosecution after offering a "no win no fee" service and eligibility checks to passengers seeking compensation - after filling in their details, passengers would often be pursued for fees despite not choosing to engage the firm or receiving any refund. 

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is currently reviewing how airlines have handled cancellations and refunds during the pandemic, due to the volume of consumer complaints received.

Be wary of:
     Cold calls, unsolicited emails or fake posts on social media advertising holiday refunds. You may be asked to pay an upfront fee as payment for handling a refund claim;
     Fake websites advertising cheap holiday deals. These can look similar to genuine websites, with similar URLs and ask for deposits for holidays which often don't exist.

What to Do
     Never give any personal or financial details to a cold caller and don't click on links in unexpected emails;
 If in doubt about an unexpected message which appears to be from your holiday provider, contact the provider via their official phone number or website.
 Remember that your consumer rights have not changed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. If you have been affected by any travel/accommodation cancellations and are unsure about your consumer rights, contact Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or check their regularly updated COVID-19 consumer website for advice and guidance.

Doorstep Scams
This week, rogue traders have been targeting elderly and vulnerable people in the Central Belt of Scotand. In one case, a scammer offered to replace the stones in an elderly consumer's driveway at a cost of £200. The scammer simply moved stones from the back garden to the front of the house.

Another woman in the same area was charged £100 to trim a tree in her garden. Rogue traders have also been knocking on doors and charging £300 to pressure wash and seal driveways. They are willing to drop the price as long as consumers will pay in cash on the spot.

What to Do
     Sign up to the Neighbourhood Watch Scotland Alert system to receive timely alerts about local crime prevention and safety issues from partners such as Police Scotland. If there are known rogue traders in your area, you will be alerted. 
     Report doorstep scammers or anyone acting suspiciously in your local area to Police Scotland on 101 or call 999 in an emergency. 
     If you have concerns about goods or services you have purchased, contact Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 for advice on your consumer rights.

Find more information about avoiding doorstep scams on the Trading Standards website, where you can download their No Cold Calling leaflet and Doorstep Signposts factsheet.

Netflix Email Scam
We have seen a new scam email saying that you can win a year's premium subscription to Netflix. Clicking on the link leads to a genuine-looking login page which is designed to steal your account and  payment details.

Action Fraud reported that, last month alone, they received over 1,400 reports about fake Netflix emails. In previous bulletins we have covered these scams, some of which ask the recipient to click on a link to update their billing details following a failed payment. Others say that your account has been temporarily suspended and ask you to confirm your details and payment method in order to have it reactivated.

Netflix state on their website that they will NEVER email or text customers to ask for personal details, including passwords or bank details.


What to do
     If you receive a similar email or text, do not click on any links or open any attachments. If you do, your details could be harvested by scammers 
     Report scams to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or through their website
     You can also report scam emails to the National Cyber Security Centre’s Suspicious Email Reporting Service.
     If you have been the victim of fraud, report this to Police Scotland on 101.

Pop-up Energy Adverts
Since warning about misleading energy marketing scams linked to the UK Government's "Green Homes" grant scheme, we have seen several examples of pop-up adverts on social media which imply that funding or grants for energy saving products are available to Scottish consumers.

One example says that all Scottish homeowners are eligible for over £2,000 of funding and asks you to enter your personal details in order to apply.  

These adverts are designed to collect data and generate leads for companies who engage in misleading marketing. Clicking on these adverts leads to a form where you are asked to fill in personal details in order to determine whether you qualify for a grant. We are aware of Scottish consumers who have responded to these adverts and have then been called and visited by companies who pressured them into signing expensive contracts for energy saving products that they did not want or need.

Police Scotland have also warned this week that if you receive an email or text regarding "Green Home" grants, it is very likely to be a scam. They advise that you should delete the message and do not click on any links or reply with any personal details.

Top 10 Scottish Phone Scams
Scottish consumers continue to be hassled by a variety of nuisance calls. The most commonly reported phone scams in Scotland between April-June 2020 were: 

1. Misleading sales of insurance for white goods, appliances or SKY equipment
2. Misleading sales of boiler, plumbing or drainage cover
3. Offers to reduce nuisance calls for a fee by signing you up to the Telephone Preference Service
4. Bank fraud - e.g. recorded messages saying that there has been a potential fraudulent transaction on your account and asking you to press 1 to discuss with an advisor
5. Attempts to gain remote access to your computer 
6. HMRC frauds - e.g. saying that HMRC are filing a lawsuit against you and asking you to press 1
7. Amazon Prime scams
8. Claims management calls - e.g. offering services in relation to claiming backdated Marriage Tax Allowance or claiming tax owed on recent PPI payments 
9. Misleading calls related to Green Deal funding (see above for more information about energy marketing scams)
10. Offers of "free" lottery tickets or calls advising that you have won a competition and asking for personal and bank details
 
General Advice for Avoiding Phone Scams
 Do not press 1 or follow any other instructions given in an automated message
 If you are speaking to a person, don’t give them any personal information,don’t agree to make any payments and never allow them to access yourcomputer remotely
 Contact your bank immediately if you think you may have made a payment to a scammer or if you are worried that a fraudulent transaction has been made from your account. Use the phone number on your bank statement or a publicly listed number (don’t use a number given to you by a cold caller).
To ensure that you are disconnected from the cold caller, phone another number such as 123 before phoning your bank or call them from another phone.
 Never agree to make a payment for goods or services on the spot – get at least two other quotes from trusted companies.
 Report scam calls to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or through their website. If you have been the victim of fraud, report it to Police Scotland on 101

Bank Email Scam
A recipient of Neighbourhood Watch Scotland Alerts has this week reported a scam email purportedly from the "National Crime Investigation Centre" in the USA. The email addresses them as a "scam  victim" and says that there has been an investigation into their bank, who may have delayed a payment in order to divert funds to another account. The recipient is advised to contact an officer using a Gmail account in order to receive a compensation payment.

Report scams to Advice Direct Scotland and if you have been the victim of fraud, report this to Police Scotland on 101.

Arrest - Tax Refund Scams
A man has been arrested this week for sending over 1,000 fake texts offering Government tax
refunds during the Covid-19 lockdown. He obtained personal details from 191 victims and defrauded 49 of them out of £10,000 in total.

One of the texts appeared to have been sent by UKGOV and read: "You are eligible for a Tax Refund as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Please fill out the following form so that we can process your refund" The link in the message led to a legitimate-looking HMRC website which asked for personal and banking details.

Local Scams
Aberdeen City Council this week received a report of a scam targeting local businesses. Businesses
were cold called and then received a follow up email with a seemingly simple request for them to
confirm their address for local listings. However, the terms and conditions actually stated that the
business would be liable for monthly payments if they responded to the email and signed the form.  

Businesses should be wary of similar scams and should ensure that anything they agree to sign not only comes from a trusted source, but that the details/terms are fully understood before they commit.

A Scottish car dealer was also recently targeted by a scammer who applied for a UK Government Bounce Back Loan in their name and then tried to pay for a car using the funds. 

What to Do 
     Question unexpected emails which request private business information or payments, even if they appear to come from someone within your company 
     Think about what you are being asked to do – if in doubt about financial transactions or changes to Direct Debits get a second opinion from a colleague or manager
     Confirm requests for payment or sensitive information with the person or company who has supposedly sent them, using contact information that you know to be correct 
     Remember that scam emails and texts can look genuine and can appear to come from Government agencies, people within your organisation and trusted companies
     Report scam business emails to the National Cyber Security Centre

The Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) have a variety of resources to
support and protect Scottish businesses. Business Gateway also have online
tutorials about keeping your business safe online and cyber resilience.

Find more information about business scams and links to official guidance on our
website.

Scottish Illegal Money Lending Unit
Loans from Personal Lenders
Be wary if you get a message offering a loan from a personal lender similar to the one shown. If you
request a loan, you may be asked to pay an up-front fee and may not receive any money in return. Find out whether a lender is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority on their register.

Loans from illegal money lenders end up costing on average three times as much as a legal loan, with some charging interest rates of as much as 120,000%. Loan sharks continue to target the most vulnerable people, particularly those who have been financially affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. If you feel that you have nowhere to turn, please remember that you are not alone. 

The Scottish Illegal Money Lending Unit's free and confidential 24-hour hotline is open 7 days a week - call 0800 074 0878 or fill out an online reporting form.

Official Contacts

 If you feel threatened or unsafe, contact Police Scotland on 101 or 999 in an emergency.
 Report scams to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000.
 Sign up to the Neighbourhood Watch Alert system to receive localised information and updates.

Get genuine information and updates about the COVID-19 pandemic from official
websites:

  NHS Scotland - Coronavirus information and advice
 UK Government - Response to Coronavirus
 World Health Organisation (WHO) - Technical Guidance

Follow us on Twitter @NorthEPolice #WestEndCPT 

Also available are the three following contact email addresses for the West End:

Contact Us
Please also remember you can communicate with us using any of the following:
  101 – Non emergency
  999 – Emergency
  0800 555 111 - Crimestoppers