Neighbourhood Watch Launches Think Widen Burglary Prevention Campaign:

W: WINDOWS: Keep your windows locked
I: INTERIOR: Put inside lights on a timer/smart bulb
D: DOORS: Double or deadlock your doors
E: EXTERIOR: Put outside lights on a sensor
N: NEIGHBOURS: Keep an eye out for your neighbours INFORMATION LINK


DEVON AND CORNWALL POLICE: Major joint police drug operation shows South West is No Place For Drugs. Today  (21.3.22) sees the launch of Op Scorpion, one of the biggest and most significant South West police operations in recent years. Op Scorpion is a huge joint project which will see the entire South West of England become a hostile environment for anyone trying to deal drugs. More details (including video) can be found here – OP SCORPION

Anyone with any information re illegal use of drugs or who has witnessed drug dealing or antisocial drug taking in their community can share this information anonymously and safely, without fear of reprisals, by contacting CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111 or by visiting CRIMESTOPPERS LINK


DEVON AND CORNWALL POLICE FRAUD ALERT Police in Devon and Cornwall are seeing increasing victims of Bank and Police Impersonation Style Frauds, this is where people are receiving calls from individuals claiming to be from a person’s bank, local branch, the banks fraud department, the Financial Conduct Authority, or a Police Officer from a fraud department. As a result of the call people are often told their accounts have been compromised or the individual is asked to assist with an investigation by moving or using their money to catch the fraudsters. People are often asked to transfer their funds to a new account to safeguard their money or are requested to purchase items or withdraw cash in a story given of it helping investigations. People are often told staff at their local bank branch are involved in the scam and are told not to talk to anyone about it as it may compromise the Fraud Investigation. Devon and Cornwall Police would like to make people aware of these types of scams to hopefully stop more people falling victim. Read more here: FRAUD ALERT LINK



The campaign taps into the psychology that scammers use to hook people in, helping you stay one step ahead and protect yourself and your loved ones against the increasing variety of scams happening every day. We’ve identified the following five behaviours scammers commonly use:
• They imply they’re doing you a favour (reciprocity)
• They indicate everyone else is doing this (social proof)
• They say your only chance is to act now (urgency)
• They act like they’re similar to you, so you like them and want to please them (connection)
• They ask you to do one little thing which makes you do more (commitment).
We also know that often victims of scams report that in hindsight they felt something wasn’t quite right at the time. This campaign aims to raise awareness of the tactics scammers use and encourages people to ‘stop and think’ if something doesn’t FEEL, SEEM, LOOK or SOUND right. This allows them time to trust your gut instinct and help prevent becoming a scam victim.
“Everyone likes to feel special. But watch out! If a stranger is going out of their way for you, something fishy may be going on instead. Scammers like to offer one-off deals and favours. Don’t be afraid to tell them no.” John Hayward-Cripps, CEO of Neighbourhood Watch Network
How can you support this campaign?
• LEARN: Visit our scams website pages to learn more about common scams, preventing scams, reporting scams, supporting victims and a scams campaign toolkit
• SHARE: Follow us on our Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / LinkedIn channels and share our posts
• JOIN THE CONVERSATION: Join us for an online talk (details below)
We are delivering a series of scams awareness online talks in partnership with the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU), the National Trading Standards Scams Team (NTSST) and Avast.
Anyone can attend, but we are now running waiting lists only for all the webinars apart from one! Last week we ran an online talk on ‘Exploring the psychology behind scams and how scammers are so effective at their crimes’. It was so popular we have decided to re-run it on 27th July, 5pm. Click here to book your place. Please note – this event will not be recorded.
Keep safe,
Follow us.. / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / LinkedIn
Neighbourhood Watch Network is a charity registered in England & Wales, CIO no: 1173349

Scam calls with matching numbers
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) is warning the public to be vigilant of scam calls that appear to be coming from numbers similar to their own. Commonly, the first seven digits (07nnnnn) match the victim’s own number. The calls impersonate well-known government organisations, or law enforcement agencies, and will ask the recipient of the call to “press 1” in order to speak with an advisor, or police officer, about unpaid fines or police warrants.
In May 2021, Action Fraud received 2,110 scam call reports where the caller’s number matched the first seven digits of the victim’s own phone number. Of these, 1,426 (68%) referred to HMRC or National Insurance.
Victims have also reported receiving these types of calls, and messaging, via widely-used messaging apps, such as WhatsApp.
What you need to do:
Government and law enforcement agencies will not notify you about unpaid fines or outstanding police warrants by calling or texting you. Do not respond to any calls or texts you receive about these.
Always take a moment to stop and think before parting with money or your personal information, it could prevent you from falling victim to fraud. Remember, it’s okay to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
If you receive a suspicious text message, you can report it by forwarding the message to 7726. It’s free of charge.
Suspicious telephone/mobile calls can be reported to Action Fraud via their website:
For more information about how to protect yourself online, visit and and follow @DC_CyberProtect on Twitter.

Devon & Cornwall Police – Scam Involving Mobile Phones
This scam involves a resident receiving a cold call from someone purporting to be from a mobile phone company giving details of an offer on a mobile phone contract with a new handset.
A mobile phone is then delivered to the resident which is different from the one offered in the original call, the resident receives another call from the fraudster stating that the wrong phone was sent and an address is given for it to be sent to.
Please be wary of this scam. If you are looking for a new contract or mobile phone please do not take the word of a cold caller as genuinely being from that Company, do not give any personal information.
After receiving a cold call please wait ten minutes before making another call, or make sure the line has cleared by phoning a friend/family member.
If you believe you may have been a victim to this scam please phone the Company that the phone has been sent from, by finding the number from a reliable source.
If you have given out any financial information please phone your bank or building society immediately and then make contact with Action Fraud or telephone 0300 123 2040.
If you have concerns please phone 101 or email
Thank you.

Do You Know What A Ghost Broker is? Read on and don’t be their next victim.
“Ghost brokers” are fraudsters who sell fake or invalid car insurance policies.  Victims are sold fake insurance documents for a policy that does not exist, or for a genuine policy that has been set up using false details to lower the price of the premium.  Please click on the link to find out more:

Ghost Broker information and advice

Police appeal for information after two men cause extensive damage to shop  31 March 2021

Police are appealing for information after extensive damage was caused to a convenience store in Willand, near Cullompton, during an attempted burglary in the early hours of this morning, Wednesday 31 March.
At around 3.50am two men arrived in a white Seat Leon car at the Co-op on Four Cross Avenue and used equipment to cause an explosion to get at the cash machine.
The men then used pickaxes to try and gain entry to the front of the shop. The men fled the scene in their vehicle in the direction of Cullompton, when disturbed by a passing motorist.
Nothing was taken but substantial damage, estimated to be in the region of several thousand pounds, was caused to the shop.
One of the suspects is described as a man with a large build, wearing a black hooded top, a grey face mask, a grey or dark striped T-shirt, black trousers and black Nike trainers with a white tick.
The other suspect is described as being a man, wearing a black jacket, black face mask, black trousers and trainers, possibly with red laces.
Police would like to hear from anyone who saw any suspicious people or vehicles in the area in the days prior to the incident, or who has CCTV or dashcam footage of the car en route to, or leaving the scene this morning.
Anyone with any information is asked to contact police on 101 or via email at quoting crime reference CR/024966/21.



Introduction by Cllr Bob Evans on his role as a Councillor Advocate:

“As a District Councillor my role has many opportunities that can be used to help and inform the Communities I serve, one such opportunity is to enrol as a Councillor Advocate with the Police and Crime Commissioners office. This will allow information be passed both ways, ie local knowledge of issues and concerns from Police to the Community and from the Community to the Police via myself, this is not a Golden bullet to stop all crime but an excellent opportunity to inform and be informed.

The scheme will provide a consistent flow of information that will be passed to the administrator of the Willand PC web pages for publication in this new section, I hope you find it informative and helpful”.

Bob Evans
MDDC Councillor, Lower Culm


Telephone: 01884 824082



Useful Contact Details:-

If a crime is in progress residents should always contact the police on Emergency telephone 999.

Reporting a crime or a suspicion to Devon and Cornwall Police (non-emergency)

Telephone: 101

Police enquiry office:

Reporting a crime anonymously to CrimeStoppers

Telephone: 0800 555111

Reporting safeguarding concerns to Adult’s Services

You can find details of local Adult’s Services contacts on the Devon and Cornwall Police website.


  • Fraud Scams

    Message from

    Ashley Jone,  the Regional Fraud Protect Advisor employed by the South West Regional Organised Crime Unit (SWROCU), that being a Home Office funded, Law Enforcement body serving all the police force areas of the South West of England. For more information on the SWROCU, you may wish to visit the website here:

    His role is to undertake activity that reduces economic crime (fraud), through improving awareness and promoting preventative measures with individuals and organisations, to enable them to better protect themselves from economic crime.

    Please click on the link below for more information in a You Tube video  or download a PDF of the book.

    Presentation on different scams

    The Little Book of Big Scams – 5th Edition

  • Fuel Thefts

    Over recent months there have been a number of fuel thefts force wide. Both commercial and domestic settings have been targetted. In particular, there have been several high value thefts from businesses on isolated industrial estates. (Up to £36k on one occasion.)
    We are asking two things:
    1. If you have a fuel tank – either domestic, agricultural or commercial, please review its security.
    Is it locked/alarmed? Is there security lighting/CCTV? Make it difficult to access if possible!
    2. To steal fuel you will need large containers. Offenders will often use curtain sided vehicles (see image) or commercial vans to carry these containers for these offences. If you see these type of vehicles acting suspiciously – especially under cover of darkness or over the weekends please report it to the police including as much detail of those involved as possible.
    999 if offenders are present.
    or 101/ if non urgent.


    Curtain (2).jpg


  • Scam warning - Fake National Insurance number fraud

    We have received reports of residents receiving scam cold calls regarding their National Insurance number.
    The person calling informs the resident that their National Insurance number has been compromised or used in some way, or a variation of this, and that a new National Insurance number will need to be issued. Personal details are asked for.
    Please be cautious of any unexpected calls. If you have any doubts about what is being asked of you or instructed by a cold caller, hang up the phone. A legitimate company or organisation will not put pressure on you or rush you.
    If you have passed on any personal information to a cold caller please phone Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or make a report via the website
    If you have given out any financial information please phone your bank or building society immediately and then make contact with Action Fraud.
    Please inform friends, family and community groups.

  • Fake Vaccination Text
    Please be wary of fake COVID-19 vaccine text alerts, the fake text alerts appear to be from the NHS stating that the recipient is eligible to apply for a vaccine and followed by a link – please do not click on the link – the link is a convincing fake NHS website which asks for personal and financial information. The NHS will never ask for your banking information.

    Please be wary of other scams related to COVID-19 which may include:

    • Fake links claiming to take you to a Government website for a COVID-19 related payment
    • Offers of health supplements that will prevent you from becoming infected
    • Financial support offers that appear to be from your bank
    • Fines suggesting you have breached lockdown
    If you have clicked and supplied your details please phone your bank/building society immediately on a telephone number from a reliable source (if any financial information has been passed) and report to Action Fraud via the website or by phoning 0300 123 2040.

    If you have any concerns please email or phone 101.

  • Scam Warning - Fake PayPal Emails
    Action Fraud is warning people selling items online to be on the lookout for criminals sending fake PayPal emails.
    Between January 2020 and September 2020, 21,349 crime reports were made to Action Fraud about fake PayPal emails.
    Victims reported losing a total of £7,891,077.44 during this time.
    Those targeted included people selling jewellery, furniture and electronics via online marketplaces.
    Reports of fake PayPal emails to Action Fraud made up a third of all reports of online shopping and auction fraud during this period.
    How does it happen?
    Criminals have been targeting people selling items online, by sending them emails purporting to be from PayPal. The emails trick victims into believing they have received payment for the items they’re selling on the platform.
    Typically, after receiving these emails, victims will ship the item to the criminal. This leaves them at a further disadvantage having not received any payment for the item and also no longer being in possession of it.
    How can you protect yourself?
    Sellers beware: If you’re selling items on an online marketplace, be aware of the warning signs that your buyer is a scammer. Scammers may have negative feedback history, or may have recently set up a new account to avoid getting poor feedback. Don’t be persuaded into sending anything until you can verify you’ve received the payment.
    Scam messages: Don’t click on the links or attachments in suspicious emails, and never respond to messages that ask for your personal or financial details.
    How to spot the difference: A PayPal email will address you by your first and last name, or your business name, and will never ask you for your full password, bank account, or credit card details in a message.
    If you think you’ve been a victim of fraud, report it to Action Fraud online at or by calling 0300 123 2040.
  • Scam Information - Amazon or Amazon Prime

    We would like to make residents aware that we have received reports of various scams taking place where a cold caller, email, or automated call claims to be from Amazon or Amazon Prime.
    Please be wary of all contact of this type – the scams have varied and include the following:

    • an automated call a stating a number should be pressed for various reasons
    • or by someone in person asking for vouchers to be purchased in a shop and codes to be handed over
    • a request to download an app
    • emails with links attached (to phishing sites)

    All of these are scams and instructions should not be followed, please hang up, don’t give out any personal information or click on any links.
    If you want to check a call is genuine  – hang up and make contact the company via a reliable source. Please wait ten minutes before making another call or clear the line by phoning a friend/family member.
    If you have any concerns please phone 101 or email
    If you have fallen victim to a scam, please report this to Action Fraud:
    Please report any suspicious emails you receive to the National Cyber Security Centre:

  • Scam Information
    We would like to make you aware that we have received reports of the following scam taking place recently.
    Residents have received automated phone calls stating it is from HMRC about non payment/prosecution or similar, an instruction is then given to press a number – please do not follow instructions – this is a scam.
    If you have any concerns please phone 101 or email
    If you have fallen victim to a scam, please report this to Action Fraud:
  • Fake Penalty Charge Email

    We would like to make the public aware of a recent fake penalty notice scam which is sent by email, the email looks genuine and official and states that a penalty charge is due, the email normally contains a link to pay online, please do not click on links.

    To check a fine is genuine please use a reliable source of information to make contact to check.
    Please be wary of this type of scam with emails that contain links, links can take you to a phishing website that is used to steal financial information.

    If you have any concerns please phone 101 or email

    Suspicious emails can also be forwarded to the National Security Centre’s “Suspicious Email Reporting Service” (SERS) and if you have fallen victim to a phishing scam, please report this to: Action Fraud:

    Please pass this information on.
    Thank you.

  • Doorstep Callers - Mid Devon

    We have had reports of cold callers offering roofing services (power washing and roof tile painting). They were in Honiton on Tuesday 4 August and may now have moved on to another town in Devon.Do not agree to work offered by unsolicited doorstep callers.If you want work doing in your home or garden, take time to get three quotes from reputable businesses you trust and make your decision on who to use in your own time.

    Get business recommendations from friends or via Buy With Confidence

    1. If you are concerned someone is at risk, always call the police.
    2. If you are concerned rogue traders are operating in your area, always report it.
    3. If someone knocks on your door and you are not sure, don’t open the door.

    Find more information here

  • Face Coverings Become Mandatory In All Shops and Retail Premises

    Face Coverings Become Mandatory In All Shops and Retail Premises


  • Scam Cold Caller

    We have received a report of a scam cold caller phoning a resident in Barnstaple purporting to be from an internet/television channel provider and stated that the resident was due a refund.
    The caller asked for the residents’ bank details and subsequently tried to remove money from the residents’ account.
    Please be wary of cold callers, hang up on similar calls and do not follow instructions. Please do not give out your bank details to any cold caller.

    If you want to call the company/organisation that the cold caller purports to be from please, if possible, call from a different phone or make sure that the telephone line has cleared before phoning as the caller could still have the phone line open – this could take 10 minutes to clear, or it can be cleared by making another phone call – we suggest phoning a friend or family member.
    Please use a telephone number from a reliable source and not one provided by the caller.
    Information on scams can be found on the Action Fraud website
    More prevention advice can be found on the Devon and Cornwall police website:

    Please pass this information on to others and consider displaying this information in public areas, noticeboards etc.
    If you have concerns or information please phone 101 or email quoting crime CR/054477/20.


  • Think Twice


With the current situation regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus) regularly changing, Devon and Cornwall Police have pulled together some of the more commonly asked questions along with their responses. These FAQ’s are available here and have recently been updated –