Cambridgeshire County Council's Community Protection team will lead the fightback to share knowledge and to give residents the confidence to spot scams, report scams, get advice and tell others about their experiences.

The Scams Awareness Month theme this year is "listening to your gut feeling" and the County Council is calling on residents to act on their initial caution and suspicion that often comes when they get an unexpected phone call, email, mailing or knock at the door.

It is estimated that £5 billion is lost each year by UK consumers to mass-marketed scams via phone and post, with one in ten people falling victim to financial scams losing hundreds, sometimes thousands, even hundreds of thousands of pounds. Last year, around 300 organisations supported Scams Awareness Month across the UK, sharing message online through social media and by talking about scams face to face with consumers.

Elaine Matthews from the County Council's Community and Cultural Service said: "The national Scams Awareness Month campaign is a great opportunity to really highlight the issue of scams and the damage and distress that they cause victims. We are asking you all to help spread the message in your community, particularly with your elderly or more vulnerable friends or neighbours.  Any one of us can be a victim of a scam so make sure you know the signs to look out for and trust your instincts. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is".

If you know money has been paid to a scam report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.  For further advice on scams contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06.

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