Trading Standards

Frequently Asked Questions for this Service

Question: How do I know if the phone call, letter, email I have received is a scam?

Answer: The main clue is that it is an unsolicited call, out of the blue, you haven't asked for it. Also remember legitimate organisations will never contact you in this way and will never ask you to hand over bank or card details or ask you to click on links. If in doubt talk to somebody else about it.

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Question: Is it illegal to cold call?

Answer: No it’s not. It is a voluntary scheme which relies on residents of the area to say no to Cold Callers and to report them to Trading Standards or the Police. The zone is there to give a message to callers that they are not wanted in that area and that people in the area will not do business with them so there is no point in them calling!

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Question: What is the purpose of a no cold calling zone?

Answer: The purpose of No Cold Calling zones (NCCZ’s) is to discourage cold callers from specific residential areas. The introduction of the scheme provided householders with the opportunity to collectively discourage the often-unwelcome practice of cold calling.
The No Cold Calling zones are designed to discourage rogue traders who, for example, tell householders work needs doing to their property and then charge exorbitant prices or perhaps the work does not need to be done at all.

Be aware that the No Cold Calling Zone doesn't relate to Charity collectors or religious callers


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Question: What if I find that someone has entered into a contract with a doorstep seller?

Answer: The Trading Standards Service enforces a piece of legislation known as the Cancellation of Contracts made in a Consumer’s Home or Place of Work etc Regulations 2008. If you buy goods or services costing more than £42 as a result of a trader’s visit to your home or place of work, the trader is required by law to provide you with a written copy of your cancellation rights explaining your rights to cancel the contract. This should be given at the time the contract is made. This will then give you 14 days to cancel the contract starting the day the cancellation notice is received. Failure to do this may be a criminal offence and may make the agreement unenforceable. It does not matter whether the visit is one that you have requested yourself or whether it is unsolicited. Please report any instances where residents have entered into contracts so that we can ensure that they have the relevant paperwork and that no other criminal offences have taken place. Report any issue like this to the Trading Standards Service on 823000 option 3.

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Question: What should I do if I, or someone I care about has been involved in a scam?

Answer: With their consent contact Trading Standards on 01983 823000 option 3. if a member of staff is unable to talk to you they will call you back as soon as possible. If necessary we are happy to visit and talk through the scam and suggestions for keeping safe in the future

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Question: What happens if a No Cold Calling Zone still gets unwanted callers?

Answer: Most residents of zones report that they see a marked decrease in the number of unwanted callers. However, if someone still calls refuse to do business with them. Point out that the area is a NCCZ. Make a note of who they are and any vehicle they are travelling in, including the registration of the vehicle. Report the information to the Isle of Wight Trading Standards Service on Tel: 823000 option 1 and/or the Police on 101. However if you feel threatened ring 999. What will Trading Standards do if I report it? Isle of Wight Trading Standards will investigate who the trader is, inform them that they are calling in a NCCZ and take further action if necessary.

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Question: How should I report a scam?

Answer: Scams Advice is available from the helpline 0808 250 5050 (this is a free phone number) or on their web page at www.citizensadvice.org.uk/reporting-a-scam/ this information will be referred to us for intelligence and we will contact you if required.

You can also report scams to Action Fraud at https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/ they are responsible for gathering intelligence although will not deal with your specific query. - Related Link

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Question: How can I protect myself from scams?

Answer: For more information on staying safe from scams visit www.iwasp.org.uk - Related Link

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