Protect yourself from fraud with expert advice at library events this autumn

Expert advice to help protect people from fraud will be available at library drop-in events run by a specialist economic crime detective in Cumbria this autumn.

Detective Constable Claire Keyes will be holding presentations and giving out one-to-one guidance to those attending the sessions, held in partnership with libraries services in October.

DC Keyes, who works in Cumbria Police’s Economic Crime Unit, will be visiting libraries across the north, south and west of the county.

Residents will be able to catch her advice at libraries in Carlisle, Penrith, Brampton, Longtown, Workington, Whitehaven, Millom, Frizington, Barrow, Grange and Kendal.

DC Keyes said: “There are many different types of fraud, from fraudsters attempting to defraud you over-the-phone, to doorstep callers, to high-tech online fraud.

“Many of us have probably had a phone call, text message or email where someone is offering a service that is fake.

“Or we’ve received an email where the sender has asked us to click on a link, with the motive being to carry out fraud or cyber crime.

“As such, people can understandably get confused about what is a genuine call or email or what might be an attempt to defraud them.

“We hope these sessions will offer some easy-to-understand advice on how to stay safe from fraudsters along with an explanation of some of the threats out there.”

The events are being organised as an additional way of getting advice to people.

DC Keyes said: “There are many good sources of advice online – but this is a chance to give in-person advice and for people to ask follow-up questions at a traditional drop-in event.

“There are many people still who are maybe not comfortable online – and this will give them the opportunity to hear more about how they can protect themselves.

“If someone has an older or more vulnerable member of the family, friend or neighbour who they think might get something out of these sessions, we’d encourage them to suggest this to them, or accompany them to whichever event is most convenient.

“But anyone can become a victim of fraud, so these sessions – and the chance to ask questions – could be useful to anyone.”

DC Keyes added: “What people should realise is fraudsters are often organised criminals who know how to manipulate people and get what they want.

“It is very important people know that being defrauded is not their fault; they should not feel ashamed – they are victims of crime just like every other victim of crime.

“As such, we would always encourage them to report any offences as soon as possible.

“We’d also like to thank staff at the libraries services for hosting these events and making them possible.”

Cllr Virginia Taylor, Westmorland and Furness Council Cabinet Member for Sustainable Communities and Localities, said: “Westmorland and Furness Library Service is delighted to present these wonderful free events aimed at combating fraud.

“It is crucial that we equip our communities with the knowledge and resources they need to protect themselves from fraud, and we are pleased to play a part in educating our residents about those risks.”

Cllr Anne Quilter, Cumberland Council Executive Member for Vibrant and Healthy Places, said: “These free events play a crucial role in the fight against fraud.

“Cumberland Library Service values the opportunity to contribute towards providing our residents with the essential information and tools they need to protect themselves.

“We would encourage our communities to come along to the event in their local library, and take the opportunity to discover what else is on offer from your library service.”

Deputy Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, Mike Johnson, said: “Fraudsters can be very sophisticated in the way they present themselves and their scams, with some scams being incredibly difficult to spot.

“The best way to reduce fraud, is to learn the signs and prevent it in the first place – where possible.

“I would encourage anyone who may feel unsure on how to identify scams to come along to one of Claire’s sessions and find out more on the risks and ask questions.

“I would also urge anyone that has been a victim of fraud to please report it to 101 and Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.”

The library sessions are as follows:

  • Carlisle – Monday October 2, 10am until 4pm. Presentation at 11am.
  • Penrith – Tuesday October 3, 10am until 4pm. Presentation at 2pm.
  • Brampton – Wednesday October 4, 10am until 12pm; 2pm until 4pm.
  • Longtown – Thursday October 5, 1pm until 4pm.
  • Workington – Monday October 9, 10am until 4pm. Presentation at 11am.
  • Whitehaven – Tuesday October 10, 10am until 4pm.
  • Millom – Wednesday October 11, 10am until 2pm.
  • Barrow – Friday October 13, 10am until 4pm.
  • Frizington – Monday October 16, 2pm until 5pm.
  • Grange – Wednesday October 18, 10am until 2pm.
  • Kendal – Friday October 20, 10am until 4pm.



You can find advice on fraud prevention at the Cumbria Constabulary website here:
Advice about fraud | Cumbria Police

Other advice is available from Action Fraud here: Action Fraud

What to do if you have been the victim of fraud

The first thing you should do if you’ve been a victim of fraud is to contact Action Fraud.

You can report a fraud by calling them on 0300 123 2040.

If there is a crime being committed right now or if you are in danger you should call the police on 999.

If debit or credit cards, online banking or cheques are involved, you should also contact your bank or credit card company.


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