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Posted by Angela Rawlins, Jun 4 2010 8:59AM

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BEWARE - SCAM

I got a form yesterday addressed to my business from 'EUROPEAN CITY GUIDE' it is designed to look as though you have signed up to something and just need to complete your details -DON'T - you can incur a huge charge of 1000 euros'. My husband recommends to keep the form in your accounts for later reference just in case you get a bill demanding payment!!

Angela Rawlins
Co-ordinator
Keith A. Meager
Jun 26 2010 12:45PM
Henry Tang and myself from the Exeter Torbay and District have been approached. I have posted the following in the General Information Section and reproduce it again here,
As promised here is some information I've typed up and been circulating around the business owners I know today, and which of course will be highly relevant to our therapist' community given the way that I was targeted by this scam recently...

I have been contacted in the last 2 days by a company calling themselves "Emergency Services Press" who claim to publish a magazine that gets distributed to the offices of all the major emergency services in the UK such as fire, ambulance, police and sea or land rescue, etc.

The person who cold calls will aim to sell you advertising space for your business in their magazine, as well as advertising which they claim goes out on mail shots and email distribution lists. The evidence I have gleaned from the due diligence searches I did on the internet yesterday confirms that this is indeed a long running national scam, where no magazines or mail shots ever reach the claimed target audience. The people behind this scheme also setup different company names and website addresses which never seem to have fully identifiable contact and address location details of their registered premises. I'm sure there must be genuine companies out there doing this kind of thing, but this ain't one of them.

Businesses from any sector or area of the country could be targeted, although in my particular case they were targeting me as a provider of complementary / alternative health services. I asked where they got my details from and the person on the phone said it would have either been through the FHT (Federation of Holistic Therapists) or Embody (CThA - Complementary Therapists Association).

The websites (there could be more) of the organisation peddling this scam are:

http://www.espress.org.uk/
http://www.iplmedia.co.uk/

And a small sample of supporting evidence that this is a known scam can be read about at these web pages:

http://www.eastsussex.gov.uk/yourcouncil/pressoffice/pressreleases/2007/02/1321.htm
http://www.advertisingprotectionagency.org/ledger-of-support-publishing-firms.php
http://www.4networking.biz/forum/5/64120.htm

As of this morning, I have logged a call with Trading Standards at Devon County Council and will be forwarding this information on to all business owners that I know.

Finally, here is a very helpful webpage that I found of do's and don'ts when dealing with something like this which I took on board just in the nick of time:

http://www.insolvency.gov.uk/cib/scams.htm

Thankfully I didn't get as far as exchanging payment information with them, although nearly did, and I have covered myself in case they try to invoice me, which they have tried on with other people according to reports which can be found on the internet.


Hope this will forewarn you all,

In light & peace
Keith A Meager
Co-Ordinator
Exeter Torbay & District. 26.06.10
Patricia Wallace
Jul 21 2010 3:09PM


Hi,

I also had a call yesterday from ESPRESS, which also claimed to be a publishing magazine for the Emergency Services. they claimed to be doing a campaign in which therapists can place an ad in the magazine.
During the call they tried to get me to make the order ,the call was being recorded so when i said i was interested they said that was a verbal agreement . Unfortunately i fell for it up to a point because they got my details from Embody, however i refused to give any card details etc, as i soon came to my senses and realised that the whole thing sounded dodgy!!!
I will contact Trade Standards and the police just in case i get any further hassle from them!!!

take care

pat
Angela Rawlins
Jul 21 2010 4:35PM
Pat

Contact CThA, perhaps they can do a mass publication on scams
Patricia Wallace
Jul 22 2010 10:59AM


Thanks Angela,

it would be a good idea to contact CTha, it seems alot of businesses of all trades etc have been targeted by these people, its so wrong and they shouldnt be able to get away with it!!

regards

pat

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