Image of Temple Island and the rowing course
Image of Temple Island and the rowing course
Remenham Parish
Remenham Parish

Thames Valley Police Alerts

£15M Lost To Online Shopping Scams Last Christmas

Online shopping scams cost shoppers £15.4 million over the Christmas period last year.
New data from Action Fraud, the national reporting centre for fraud and cyber crime, reveals that 28,049 shoppers were conned out of their money when shopping online over the Christmas period last year – an increase of almost two thirds (61 per cent) when compared to the same period in the previous year.
Ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Action Fraud is warning the public to take extra care when shopping online as reports of online shopping fraud have continued to surge. Here are some simple tips to help you and your family enjoy a secure online shopping experience this festive season.
Where to shop
Buying from an online store you haven’t used before? Carry out some research first, or ask a friend or family member if they’ve used the site and about their experiences before completing the purchase.
Your information
Only create an account if necessary or to save you effort if you’re going to use that site a lot in the future. Be cautious if the website asks you for details that are not required for your purchase, such as your mother’s maiden name or the name of your primary school.
Payment method
When it's time to pay for your items, check there's a 'closed padlock' icon in the browser's address bar. Use a credit card when shopping online, if you have one. Most major credit card providers protect online purchases.
Phishing
Some of the messages you receive about amazing offers may contain links to fake websites. If you’re unsure about a link, don’t use the it – go separately to the website. Report suspicious emails you receive by forwarding them to: report@phishing.gov.uk. Report suspicious text messages by forwarding them to: 7726.
Email accounts:
Make sure that your really important accounts (such as your email account or online shopping accounts) are protected by strong passwords that you don't use anywhere else.
Need help changing your email account password? You can use these links to find step by step instructions: GmailYahoo! MailOutlookBTAOL Mail
If things go wrong
If you've lost money to an online shopping scam, tell your bank and report it as a crime to Action Fraud (for England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or Police Scotland (for Scotland). By doing this, you'll be helping to prevent others becoming victims of cyber crime.

For more of the government’s latest advice on how to stay secure online, visit the Cyber Aware website: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware

The Best Way To Keep Hackers Out of Your Online Accounts

Enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) is the single most important thing you can do to improve the security of your online accounts.
What is 2FA?
Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a way of strengthening the login security of your online accounts. It's similar to how an ATM works. You need both your debit card (first factor) and your PIN (second factor) to get access your account and withdraw cash. The main objective is better security. If your card is stolen, they still need your PIN. If your PIN is stolen, they still need your card.

Enabling 2FA will help to stop hackers from getting into your accounts, even if they have your password.

How do I enable 2FA on my accounts?
Here are links you can use to enable 2FA on some of the most popular online services and apps:


For more of the government’s latest advice on how to stay secure online, visit the Cyber Aware website: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware

0800 555 111 - A Number To Remember

Thames Valley Police have frequently repeated that their success in fighting crime is very dependent on the efficient gathering of relevant information – ‘criminal intelligence’ – from the public. So, we all have a personal stake in helping this process.
The Neighbourhood Watch national website - ourwatch.org.uk – offers ideas of what to look out for under various crime headings. Even those living in peaceful, low-crime areas may occasionally overhear or see something that is suspicious or ‘doesn’t look right.’ Putting together criminal intelligence has been described as a bit like a jigsaw, and even little bits of information can help – by confirming other pieces perhaps. So, it is important that we all report things that we feel could help the police.
I am sure you know that you should immediately call 999 if you see a crime being committed or in an emergency. And you should call 101 to report anything else to the police – or go online to do so. This, of course, involves you in providing your own contact details, and even though these will be treated in complete confidence by the police, sometimes we can be reluctant to ‘get involved’ to that extent. That is understandable, but we do not want your ‘piece of the jigsaw’ to be missed. It could be vital!
So, we are partnering with CrimeStoppers to remind everyone of ‘The 3rd Number – 0800 555 111’ that enables you to report your information totally anonymously if you prefer. Please view this link, and consider adding the number to your mobile phone speed-dial list so it is quickly ready when needed.
While contacting the police directly – especially if you could be an important witness – is what we hope most people will do most of the time, having the CrimeStoppers anonymous alternative plays a vital part in helping the police to ‘complete the criminal-intelligence jigsaw’.
Whichever way you do it – please report it!
Many thanks for your support!

November 2021 Newsletter

The November newsletter edition for Neighbourhood Watch supporters across England and Wales can be read here.

Do you know someone affected by ASB? 43% of victims say it’s affected their mental health. Our ASB webinar, featuring an expert speaker from the charity ASB Help, on the 15th November is open to the public but spaces are limited. Find out more including a link to book on page 2 of our newsletter.

The newsletter also features articles on: saying NO to ASB and tackling it as a community; fraud trends; staying safe as the nights draw in; looking closer to protect children from county lines; the relaunched Neighbourhood Watch Community Grants Fund; keeping Covid-19 at bay this winter; and more.

Thefts of High Value and Gold Jewellery

There has been an increase in reported thefts of high value and gold jewellery from residential properties across the area.

Residents can help avoid giving burglars the opportunity to steal their jewellery by considering these crime prevention tips:

• Try not to keep your high value jewellery at home. Consider using a bank safety deposit box. If you have to keep your jewellery at home, check that your home insurance covers these items.
• Invest in a home safe suitable for protecting your jewellery. Your insurance company may be able to provide advice as to which type and grade of safe best suits your needs.
• Photograph and keep an inventory of your jewellery. Place your jewellery against a plain background with a ruler next to it to give an idea of size. The inventory can be created as a paper version or online with companies such as Immobilise. Include identifying marks, value, and purchase date. For more information visit www.immobilise.com
• As with other valuables, do not leave any jewellery on display or post images on social media.
• Make sure your home is secure at all times. Ensure that all doors, especially rear doors, and all windows are secure and locked. Use timers that switch lights on when going out. Please do not post on social media that you are away from your home.
• Set your house alarm if you have one and consider purchasing a video doorbell or CCTV system.
• Use forensic marking to identify your jewellery. Information on forensic marking can be found on www.securedbydesign.com

Please feel free to download our attached crime prevention leaflets in English, Punjabi and Urdu.

For more information about crime prevention, please visit our website www.thamesvalley.police.uk

Please contact us if you have any information relating to burglary in your neighbourhood. Report online at www.thamesvalley.police.uk call us on 101 or in an emergency dial 999.

Alternatively, you call Crimestoppers anonymously on free phone 0800 555 111.

Thank you.

Apply Today To Become A Police Officer

Are you looking for a rewarding career that offers challenge and variety?
Do you have a degree qualification?

Start your career in policing - apply today for our Police Constable – Degree Holder Entry Programme:

https://thamesvalleypolice.tal.net/vx/appcentre-External/brand-3/candidate/so/pm/6/pl/1/opp/6437-Police-Officer-Degree-Holder-Entry-Programme-DHEP/en-GB

Thames Valley Police (TVP) is actively looking for people to ‘be the difference they want to see’ in their communities, as Police Officer recruitment re-opens.

The force is now accepting applications the Police Constable-Degree Holder Entry Programme (PC-DHEP).

This will be followed by an opportunity for those who do not hold a degree to join via the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA) on 1 September. 

Since introducing the new Police Constable entry routes (PC-DHEP and PCDA) in 2019, in partnership with Bucks New University (BNU), TVP have recruited over 170 new officers from a wide variety of backgrounds.

In the past 12 months, 44.1% of those new joiners have been female, whilst 15.2% of new joiners have been from Black, Asian or Minority-Ethnic backgrounds; this is progress as the force works towards fully representing the communities it serves.

Our new student officers have ranged in age from 19 to 51, bringing with them a wide variety of previous life and work experience including community mental health support, the military, retail and leisure, foster care, the prison service, the travel industry, teaching, animal welfare, as well as university graduates and college-leavers; demonstrating that policing continues to appeal to a wide range of people.

Despite their many differences, our new recruits all share a common purpose; to serve the public, protect our communities and keep people safe; it is this natural affinity to help others that we are looking for now. 

Policing is a challenging yet rewarding career. It offers opportunity for progression and specialisation, plus unrivalled camaraderie and team spirit. It is not easy though; we serve the public 24/7, 365, demand is high and the reality is that you are dealing with people often at the worst moment of their lives who will be looking to you for support.   

Chief Constable John Campbell says “When things are at their worst for people, I want us to be at our best.” 

We are looking for resilient individuals whose first instinct is to help and support others; the problem solvers and solution-finders, those calm under pressure, who ask questions and are curious, but also approachable with a natural ability to communicate with people from all walks of life.  

Does this sound like you or someone you know, who can make a positive impact in the community?

Hurry and submit your application today!

More information about a career as a Police Officer is available at www.tvpcareers.co.uk/police-officerEmail tracking gif

Do You Know What A Ghost Broker is?

Just 15% of people have heard of a ‘ghost broker’.* Do you know what one is?
Have you ever heard of a ‘ghost broker’? No, we are not talking about things that go bump in the night – this is a lot scarier. ‘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.

How do ‘ghost brokers’ operate?
Fraudsters lure victims in with the offer of cheaper insurance premiums, usually via social media or by word-of-mouth. These individuals or groups pose as middlemen for well-known insurance companies, claiming they can offer you legitimate car insurance at a significantly cheaper price.

This type of fraud is typically carried out either by forging insurance documents, falsifying your details to bring the price down, or by taking out a genuine policy for you but cancelling it soon after.

Often, the victim is not aware that they have been scammed until they are involved in an accident and try to claim on the policy.

Who do ‘ghost brokers’ target?
‘Ghost brokers’ tend to target vulnerable communities, including members of non-English speaking communities who may not have full knowledge of UK insurance and laws, as well as young people looking for cheaper insurance deals.

Last year, Action Fraud received 694 reports of ‘ghost broking’, with almost a third (29%) coming from victims aged 17-29. The reported losses for these victims alone totalled £113,500, with each individual losing an average of £559.

Figures also indicate that over half (58%) of all reports in 2020 were submitted by men.

What could happen if I drive without valid insurance?
As policies sold by ‘ghost brokers’ are either invalid, non-existent or fraudulent, this means that the driver is technically uninsured, meaning that you could face:

  • £300 fixed penalty notice
  • Six points on driving licence
  • Vehicle being seized and crushed

How can I protect myself from ‘ghost brokers’?
There are simple steps that you can take to spot the signs of these scams and avoid being taking for a ride by ‘ghost brokers’:

  • ‘Ghost brokers’ often advertise and communicate via social media, online forums and messaging apps. If a broker is only using a mobile phone or email as a way of contact, this can be a sign of this type of crime. Fraudsters do not want to be traced after they have taken money from their victims.
  • They may also try to sell insurance policies through print adverts in pubs, clubs or bars, newsagents
  • If a deal seems too good to be true, then it probably is. If you are not sure about the broker, check on the Financial Conduct Authority or the British Insurance Brokers’ Association website for a list of all authorised insurance brokers. You can also contact the insurance company directly to verify the broker’s details. You can also check to see if a car appears to be insured on the Motor Insurance Database website.
  • If you think that you have been a victim of a ghost broker, you can report your concerns to Action Fraud at actionfraud.police.uk or on 0300 123 2040.
  • You can also contact the Insurance Fraud Bureau via its confidential Cheatline on 0800 422 0421 or on the IFB website.

Catalytic Converter Theft

The precious metal in catalytic converters has led to a nationwide increase in their theft. Many targeted vehicles are Japanese models and vary in age from 2002 to present day. These cars are invariably more valuable to the owner for their use and reliability than their monetary value. Insurance companies often write a car off when the catalytic converter is stolen because it is often more valuable than the car it is on.

To reduce the risk of your catalytic converter being targeted by thieves, please consider the following crime prevention steps:

• Check your vehicles regularly, especially during lockdowns. We have had thefts noticed and reported a week or more after the car was last used.
• Ask your car dealer or garage if they can give you any advice on locks or guards that are approved by the vehicle manufacturer.
• Consider having extra measures fitted to make removal more difficult. Speak to your car dealer or garage about other options such as etching a serial number on the converter or making the bolts more difficult to remove.
• Register your converter and mark it with a forensic marker, which will make it harder for thieves to dispose of. Advertise that the vehicle has been protected (window stickers)
• Be aware that vehicle alarms are not often triggered when catalytic converters are removed. You can speak to your dealership or garage about adding a tilt sensor that will activate the alarm should any thief try to jack the vehicle up.
• Park your car in a locked garage where possible, but if this is not an option, then park in a well-lit and well-populated area.
• Avoid parking your vehicle half on the pavement and half on the road, as this may make it easier for thieves to access the catalytic converter.
• If there is a fleet of vehicles, park low clearance vehicles to block high clearance vehicles. This will help obstruct access underneath.

Be aware that offenders often wear high visibility vests to make you think they are legitimate. If you see someone acting suspiciously near or under a vehicle, report it to the Police straight away. Obtain as much information as possible, including any vehicle registrations.

Please contact us if you have any information relating to crime in your neighbourhood. Report online at www.thamesvalley.police.uk call us on 101 or in an emergency dial 999.
Alternatively, you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on free phone 0800 555 111.

Thefts of Parcels

Thames Valley Police has received reports of thieves stealing parcels left outside of people’s homes.

To prevent becoming a victim of parcel theft, please make arrangements for your goods to be delivered when you are home, to a trusted neighbour or a secure area where they cannot be seen or accessed by opportunist thieves.

We would like to hear from anyone with CCTV, video doorbell, dashcam footage or who may have seen anything suspicious in relation to these thefts. If you have any information, please report online or call 101.

If you don’t want to speak directly to the police you can contact “Crimestoppers” anonymously and free of charge on 0800 555 111. It is an independent charity, no personal details will be asked for, calls are not recorded or traced and you would not have to go to court.

For further crime prevention advice, please visit the Thames Valley Police website
https://www.thamesvalley.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/

Please encourage friends, family or neighbours to receive this type of message by registering at www.thamesvalleyalert.co.uk

We pleased to announce our September News newsletter is now available.

Update from Zoey Evans - Firearms Licensing Manager

Thames Valley Police will start to accept grant applications from 01 September 2020. Please ensure that you submit the relevant GP pro forma with your application form. 
 
The following link can be used to apply for your grant application – please note this link will not be activated until 01 September: 


https://www.thamesvalley.police.uk/ar/applyregister/fao/af/apply-firearm-shotgun-explosives-certificate/
 

If you have previously applied for a grant application, with a GP pro forma, please submit this GP pro forma with your online application. If it has exceeded the 6 month timeframe we will make contact with your GP to confirm that there are no changes.
 
When contacted by your Firearms Enquiry Officer please ensure that you fully comply with the COVID-19 standard operating procedures that we have put in place (in accordance with the Government guidelines). If you fail to do so your visit may be cancelled. These procedures are in place to protect both you and my team.
 
The COVID-19 pandemic is far from over and I may need to make some changes to the way in which we work if there are any localised lockdowns or change in Government guidance. As always, I will update our shooting community via this email alert system.
 
I would like to thank you all for your patience whilst we have been putting in place these health and safety measures. 
 
If you have any questions or concerns please contact the Firearms Licensing Department on the following email link - firearmslicensing@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk

Cold Callers and Doorstep Rogue Traders

Thames Valley police have received reports of cold callers in the Wokingham Borough area and this activity could increase due to further lockdown restrictions being lifted this weekend. Doorstep traders call at homes unexpectedly, offering services or goods that residents haven’t asked for. Common types of work offered include pressure washing driveways, tree surgeon services or garden clearance, roof repairs or guttering and driveway work. Genuine reputable tradespeople do not need to find work in this way. Residents who buy goods or pay for work are likely to be targeted again.

Cold Calling can also be a cover for persons planning more serious offences such as Burglary, Car Crime or ‘Bogus Official’ offences such as pretending to be from the Water Board and needing to fix a leak, where entry is gained to a house by deception in order to steal while the occupant is distracted.

If someone does call at your door, please stick to the following advice:
• Don’t agree to any work or sign anything on the spot.
• Don’t feel pressured to buy. It is your home and your right to say ‘No’.
• Don’t ever go to a Bank or Cash point with a trader. Legitimate traders would never do this.
• If you have vulnerable neighbours or family members who could potentially fall victim to these type of fraudulent individuals check in on them and call 101 with suspicious vehicles or individuals.
• If you suspect a crime is in progress, or about to occur please note descriptions and contact police on 999.

Trading Standards can assist you and your neighbours by creating a Cold Calling Zone in your street or area. For more information on how they can help, email tsadvice@westberks.gov.uk

Neighbourhood Watch is a successful crime prevention initiative. Getting together with your neighbours to take action can cut local crime. If you would like information on setting up or joining an established local scheme visit www.ourwatch.org.uk

Please pass on this advice to friends, family members and neighbours who might not receive the neighbourhood alert emails.

Shed and Allotment Security

There has been an increasing number of sheds being broken into on allotments and in residential locations across the Wokingham area. The Priority Crime Team are asking residents to check their shed, garden and allotment security. Allotment Holders may wish to consider removing equipment and items from sheds during this time.

Please follow the below links for further crime prevention advice:
www.thamesvalley.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/non-residential-burglary/secure-shed-garage/
www.thamesvalley.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/residential-burglary/protect-your-home-by-protecting-your-garden/

Please report any suspicious incidents, sightings or information by using our online service at: www.thamesvalley.police.uk. We're asking you please to only call 999 if it is an emergency and 101 if it is urgent.

The National Allotment Society has information about the effect of coronavirus on Allotment Holders at: https://www.nsalg.org.uk/news/covid19-information/

If you are looking for information about the government instruction to stay at home and how that may affect you, you'll find guidance on Gov.uk
Information about the police enforcement powers put in place to reduce the spread of the virus can also be found on the Government’s website.

You can visit the NHS website for information and advice about coronavirus.

Increase In Thefts from Motor Vehicles

There have been an increasing number of thefts from motor vehicles across the Wokingham area.

Most car criminals are opportunists. By following the below tips you can help outsmart car thieves and limit their opportunity to steal your valuables or vehicle.

• Don’t tempt thieves – Your mobile phone, coins for the car park, sunglasses, packs of medication or other items that can earn quick cash are irresistible to the opportunist thief. The cost of replacing a window is often much more than that of what’s stolen. And it should go without saying that wallets, handbags, purses and credit cards should never be left in an unattended vehicle. Even an old coat or a plastic bag left behind can tempt a thief.
• Trust locks, not luck – always double check your vehicle is locked and secure.
• Keep keys safe - and out of sight. If you have keyless entry, keep your electronic fob in a signal blocking pouch to help prevent it being scanned.
• Perfect parking - if you have a garage, use it or try to park in a well-lit location.
• Be alarmed – ensure your alarm is active and in working order.
• Sat Nav - would you be lost without it? Remove it and make sure you wipe the sucker mark off the windscreen.
• Your number’s up - number plates can be easily removed, secure them with security screws. If your number plates are stolen, report this to the Police online or contact 101.

Remember - Display and you will pay! Leave it on show, expect it to go!

If you’re looking for information about the government instruction to stay at home and how that may affect you, you'll find guidance on Gov.uk
You can visit the NHS website for information and advice about coronavirus.
Information about the police enforcement powers put in place to reduce the spread of the virus can also be found on the Government’s website.

We're asking you please to only call 999 if it is an emergency and 101 if it is urgent. If you can, use our online services at www.thamesvalley.police.uk

Please Secure Your Bicycle

These 10 tips may help your bike remain safe, secure and not a statistic.

1. Register it
Get your bike security marked and registered at www.bikeregister.com It is a highly effective, visible deterrent to bike thieves. They know that if they are caught with a registered bike, the owner can be traced and they could be arrested.

2. Record it
Remember to record details of your bike such as the frame number (normally found underneath the bike between the pedals or where the back wheel slots in), the BikeRegister number plus any other distinguishing features, and take a photo.

3. Double-lock it
It can take thieves as little as few seconds to cut through some locks, so use two good quality locks, at least one of which is a D-lock.

4. Lock the lot
Lock the frame and both wheels to the cycle parking stand.

5. Secure it
Secure your bike as close to the stand as possible to give any thieves little or no room to manoeuvre.

6. Remove the removable bits
Take parts that are easy to remove with you. Or use locking skewers or nuts which can increase security by securing the bike's components to the frame permanently, making it difficult for thieves to steal detachable parts.

7. Park secure
Lock your bike at recognised secure cycle parking. It should be well lit and covered by CCTV.

8. Remember safety begins at home
Take the same care to lock your bike securely at home as you would on the street.

9. Check ownership
Ask for proof of ownership and check the bike frame number on www.bikeregister.com

10. Act fast
If your bike has been stolen, contact us as soon as possible, give us your frame number, BikeRegister number, a photo and any other details and make sure you update the status on BikeRegister. The sooner we know, the sooner we can act, which might stop it being sold on.
https://stolen-bikes.co.uk can help to spread the word on the theft of your bike and offer you advice to help get it back.
www.findthatbike.co.uk lists adverts for bikes placed on online marketplaces, which you can check frequently to see if yours has been listed for sale.

Rural Crime Action Group RCAG Wokingham

The Rural Crime Action Group (Wokingham) are a group of volunteers and representatives from organisations including Thames Valley Police, Wokingham Borough Council and the National Farmers Union who are passionate about keeping the rural communities safe.

 

Rural crime tends to fall into one of four categories:

  • Agricultural 

Covers working farms, farm machinery, farm buildings and smallholdings. Offences include theft of equipment or fuel, damage to property and livestock worrying. 

  • Equine 

Covers working stables and equestrian centres and includes offences like tack theft and livestock worrying.

  • Wildlife

Includes hare coursing, poaching and interfering with protected species. You can find out more about wildlife crime on our website www.thamesvalley.police.uk

  • Heritage

Defined as 'any offence which harms the value of England's heritage assets and their settings to this and future generations'. This can include offences such as lead theft from churches, damage to ancient monuments and illegal metal detecting.

Rural crime can also fall under environmental crime, which covers illegal waste dumping, fly tipping, polluting watercourses and land.

If you are concerned about rural crime or your own security, a member of the RCAG can visit you and offer security and crime prevention advice for you, your premises or your home. Where, appropriate, assistance is available for those who find themselves in difficult circumstances.

 

You can contact the chair of the RCAG, Hugh Payen, at hugh.payen@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk or contact the Twyford neighbourhood policing team on TwyfordNHPT@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk 

Please note that as a team of volunteers, your enquiry may not receive an immediate response.

 

The RCAG do not respond to incidents of rural crime so please continue to report these on 101, online at www.thamesvalley.police.uk or call 999 in an emergency.

If you have information about crime or anti-social behaviour in your area but you do not want to speak to the police, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Chip and Pin Fraud

Fraudsters are actively targeting residents across Bracknell, Wokingham and surrounding areas, who use either Credit or Debit cards to make payments by way of entering a 4 digit PIN at the point of sale or when withdrawing cash.
Some offenders working in small teams, target female supermarket shoppers, taking note of the PIN as the victim taps it into the keypad at the till. They then follow the victim out into the car park where once the handbag has been placed in the car they distract the victim engaging her in conversation whilst the car is opened and the purse is stolen. On occasions the offenders have then simply gone to an ATM at the same store and withdrawn as much cash as they can from the victims account before fleeing. And all before the victim is aware of the theft.
Other offenders interfere with ATMs (cash machines) using illegal devices that retain a victim’s bank card once it has been entered into the machine whist recording the PIN as the victim taps it into the keypad. The offenders then later retrieve the victims card and use it plus the PIN to obtain cash or purchases.
A recent development to this offence has been by offenders who have targeted individuals trying to pay for parking in such locations as hospital car parks, by using their bank cards. Again the ticket machine is fitted with an illegal device to withhold the victim’s card and then approaching the victim, possibly claiming to be a car park attendant, an offender states the victim should report the incident into the machines intercom, and say the PIN so that the operator at the other end can process their payment. Again the offenders later retrieve the card and use the PIN to withdraw cash from nearby ATMs.

To prevent yourself from becoming a victim of these type of fraudsters remember the Golden Rules of;

  • Never letting anyone see what your PIN is.
  • Never writing your PIN down, and
  • Never saying your PIN out loud, to anyone.


Remeber no one in any bank ever needs to know your PIN,  No Police Officer or other legitimate investigator will ever need to know it, let alone any car park attendant.

KEEP IT SECRET!
 

Please feel free to share this information with family and friends.

Victims First Launches Video on Relationship Abuse

Victims First, which supports victims of crime and abuse across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, has launched a video to raise awareness of coercive control and emotional abuse in relationships.

The video, ‘Don’t Disappear’ can be viewed here
It highlights the red flags to look out for in a relationship, which can be the warning signs of controlling behaviour and abuse.

Coercive control became a criminal offence in 2015 and involves an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse by a perpetrator that is used to harm, punish or frighten their victim.

Although many people associate domestic abuse with physical violence, coercive control recognises the damaging impact of other forms of abuse in relationships as well.

‘Don’t Disappear’ follows the story of Jamie and Emma, from the seemingly loving early stages of their relationship, to the development of abusive behaviour.

Although anyone can be a victim of coercive control, ‘Don’t Disappear’ is particularly aimed at younger people who may have less experience of relationships or people who are at the beginning of a relationship, to raise awareness of the red flags which at the time, may be missed or misinterpreted as acceptable behaviour. 

The video covers a range of controlling behaviours exhibited from Jamie to Emma including:

  • Jealousy and possessiveness including accusations of flirting and cheating
  • Isolating her from her family and friends
  • Controlling the use of her phone and social media
  • Constantly checking on her whereabouts
  • Sudden outbursts of anger and mood changes, and
  • Love bombing - showering her with excessive affection and attention in order to retain control 

Both men and women can be victims or perpetrators of coercive control which can take place in heterosexual and same-sex relationships.

Other examples of coercive control include, depriving someone of basic needs, monitoring their time and activities, taking control over aspects of their everyday life such as where they can go or who they can see, humiliating, degrading or dehumanising someone, controlling their finances and making threats or intimidating behaviour.

You can view Don’t Disappear at https://youtu.be/d6rt8w5HBWw

Victims First is managed by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Thames Valley and provides support to anyone impacted by any type of crime or abusive.

If you have been affected by coercive control or domestic abuse you can access support through Victims First on 0300 1234 148 or online at www.victims-first.org.uk.

Supermarket Car Park Distraction Thieves

Thames Valley Police have received several reports of shoppers being targeted by “supermarket car park distraction thieves”. These thieves often prey on shoppers who enter supermarkets with a shoulder or handbag. They follow the victim through the store and stay close by as they enter their PIN number at the till. Having obtained the PIN number, two or more of the thieves follow the victim and wait until the victim has loaded their shopping and handbag into their vehicle. They then approach and as one engages the victim in conversation another thief quietly and unnoticed opens a car door and steals the handbag/wallet. Once the victim drives away the thieves often use the stolen bank card and PIN to withdraw cash from a local ATM.

To reduce the risk of becoming a victim, ensure that whenever you use a “Chip and Pin card” that you cover the key pad as you enter the 4 digit number so that no one can see/record it. Make sure your handbag and wallet are secure at all times.
 
If you have any information or would like to report a crime, please visit www.thamesvalley.police.uk or call the police non-emergency number 101.

If you do not want to speak directly to the police you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org

Please encourage your friends, family and neighbours to receive these types of messages by registering at www.thamesvalleyalert.co.uk

Van Security

Criminals often target vans parked in areas such as hotel, supermarket and retail outlet car parks.
 
Follow these simple steps to help protect your tools:
 
Mark your tools
Take a photo of the serial number or identifying marks
Use a unique tamperproof sticker
Engrave tools with your initials or a memorable word
Use an ultraviolet pen
Remember to mark your batteries, too
 
Register your tools
Register your tools and serial numbers on a national property recording database such as Immobilise.
 
Secure your vehicle
Make sure your vehicle is locked with the windows shut when it’s left unattended. Even if you are popping back and forth to grab tools, criminals only need a moment to empty your van.

Empty your van
Where possible, empty your van of your tools overnight – don’t give criminals the opportunity to empty your van for you.
 
Install a dashcam or CCTV
Consider purchasing a dash cam or CCTV camera to deter criminals from targeting your van. Alarms are also good deterrents if one is not already fitted.
 
Park against a wall
Where possible, park your van overnight in a busy, well-lit area backed against or alongside a wall to make it difficult to gain access to the back of your van.
 
Use extra locks or cages
Consider purchasing dead locks or slam locks to further secure your vehicle. Security cages can also be installed inside your van so that even if someone gains access, they still can’t get to your tools.

Thefts of Outboard Motors

Warning to boat-owners to be vigilant following thefts of outboard motors in the area.

If you have any information, please report online at https://www.thamesvalley.police.uk/
or alternatively, contact the Thames Valley Police non-emergency number 101.

If you do not want to speak directly to the police you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.

Fraudsters Targeting Social Media Influencers

The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau has received intelligence to suggest that fraudsters are contacting social media influencers, based in the UK and abroad, offering them the opportunity to market a bogus product, service or investment opportunity.

Fraudsters will present professional and credible pitches to the social media influencers and try to convince them to feature the opportunity for a fee on their social media profiles in order to entice unsuspecting followers of the influencer to sign up or make a purchase.

Additionally, fraudsters are using the names of well-known public figures, implying that their opportunity or product is endorsed by the figure when it is not.

The public should be aware that any apparent endorsement by celebrities, influencers or personalities does not necessarily mean that an investment, product or service is genuine. The public is urged to exercise a cautious approach to any such offer of investment, product or service with the same caution they would at any other time.

What You Need To Do

  • If you are purchasing goods from a company you don’t know and trust, carry out some research first, or ask friends or family for advice before completing a purchase.
  • Professional-looking websites, adverts or social media posts do not guarantee that an investment opportunity or product is genuine. Criminals can exploit the names of well-known brands or individuals to make them appear legitimate.
  • Avoid paying for goods or services by bank transfer unless you know and trust the person or company. Payments via bank transfer offer you no protection if you become a victim of fraud. Instead, use your credit card or payment services such as PayPal as they offer you greater protection if you become a victim of fraud.

Drivers Targeted With Fake Fines

Action Fraud have received an increase in reports and intelligence where elderly victims are being targeted by individuals purporting to be police officers or traffic wardens. The victims are being approached whilst parked in a car park and are told by the suspect that they have parked illegally or broken a speed limit and a photo has been taken of their car for ‘evidence’.

Victims are advised that they will face a substantial penalty fine unless they pay a smaller upfront fee immediately. Victims, who opt for paying the smaller penalty, will be directed to a parking meter and asked to enter their card and PIN. These parking meters have been tampered with by the suspect in order to retain the card.

Once the victim inserts their card and are asked for their PIN, the victims are shoulder surfed for their PIN by the suspect. Once victims input their PIN, the card is retained by the machine and victims are told by the suspect to seek help from the company who operates the parking meter or their bank.

What you need to do

  • If you are suspicious about the authenticity of the fine, do not pay it until you have verified it with your local council.
  • Always shield your PIN from view when using an ATM machine, andnever share your PIN with anyone.
  • If your bank card is retained by an ATM machine, contact your bankimmediately to inform them.

Tree Surgeon Cold Caller

We have received two reported incidents in the Woodley area of a cold caller claiming to be a tree surgeon. In one incident, the man claimed to be from the council and in the other from Neighbourhood Watch, but this has not been the case.

Remember, any legitimate tradesman calling at your door should not make you feel uneasy. If you feel threatened in any way please call 999.

Please protect yourself from Doorstop Crime and Rogue Traders:
• If you are not sure then please don’t open the door.
• Use a door chain to check who is calling and ask for ID.
• Ask a trusted friend or family member for advice on reputable traders.
• Always report any suspicious activity. You can report it online at www.thamesvalley.police.uk or call 101.

Extortion Scam

Cyber criminals send victims their own passwords in extortion scam

Cyber criminals are attempting to blackmail unsuspecting victims by claiming to have used the victims' password to install spying malware on the victims' computer. The criminals claim they’ve recorded videos of the victim watching adult material by activating their webcam when they visit these websites. What makes this scam so convincing is that the email usually includes a genuine password the victim has used for one of their online accounts. We believe criminals obtain the passwords from data breaches.

What to do if you get one of these emails?

Don’t reply to the email, or be pressured into paying. The police advise that you do not pay criminals. Try flagging the email as spam/junk if you receive it multiple times. Perform a password reset as soon as possible on any accounts where you’ve used the password mentioned in the email. Always use a strong, separate password for important accounts, such as your email. Where available, enable two-factor authentication (2FA). Always install the latest software and app updates. Install, or enable, anti-virus software on your laptops and computers and keep it updated.

If you receive one of these emails, report it to Action Fraud’s phishing reporting tool. If you have received one of these emails and paid the ransom, report it to your local police force.

Scam Alert - Fake Netflix Emails

We’ve seen an increase in reports about fake Netflix emails claiming that there’s an issue with your account, or that your account has been suspended. The email states that you need to “update” your account details in order to resolve the problem. The link in the emails leads to genuine-looking Netflix phishing websites designed to steal your username and password, as well as payment details.

Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information in case it’s a scam. Never automatically click on a link in an unexpected email or text.

For more information on how to stay secure online, visit www.cyberaware.gov.uk 

Scam Alert - Fake British Gas Emails

We’ve had an increase in reports about fake British Gas emails claiming to offer refunds. The links provided in the emails lead to genuine-looking British Gas phishing websites that are designed to steal the usernames and passwords for British Gas accounts.

Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information in case it’s a scam. Never automatically click on a link in an unexpected email or text.

For more information on how to stay secure online, visit www.cyberaware.gov.uk

Alert - Rise In Fake Amazon Emails

These fake emails are after your Amazon login details!

We’ve had an increased number of reports about these fake emails purporting to be from Amazon. The subject line and content of the emails vary, but they all contain links leading to phishing websites designed to steal your Amazon login details.

Always question unsolicited requests for your personal or financial information in case it’s a scam. Never automatically click on a link in an unexpected email or text.​​​​​​​

Importance of Dog Microchipping

Having your dog microchipped can make a lot of difference when looking for and trying to identify a missing dog.

 

Since April 2016 it has been a legal requirement for all dogs to be microchipped by 8 weeks of age.

 

Each microchip has a unique number that must be registered on a Government approved database along with information about your dog and you as its owner. If your dog is not registered on one of these databases you can be fined.

 

It is important that the information is kept up-to-date so that if your dog does go missing, you can be contacted at the correct phone number or address.

 

Reporting it to the police as soon as possible is also important, including making us aware of the microchip number so we can record this on our database. This will make it easier for us to identify any dogs that are found and check to see if they have been reported as missing or stolen.

 

It is also recommended to record the loss or theft of your dog online using sites dedicated to finding lost and stolen dogs. Often these sites work with police and other organisations, such as local Neighbourhood Watch Groups and Vetinary practices, to try and find them.

 

More information on microchipping your dog can be found on the Governmentwebsite.

 

In 2016, the Dogs Trust recorded that 9,000 stray dogs were reunited with their owners due to having a microchip with up-to-date details.

 

The People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) also reported that in 2017, 11% of dog owners did not realise that it was a requirement by law to have their dog microchipped and a further 7% had not updated their details when they needed to.

Fake Government Grants Fraud Alert

Individuals and businesses are being warned to watch out for cold calls and online contact from fraudsters who are offering victims the opportunity to apply for Government grants for an advance fee.

 

To make the grants look legitimate fraudsters have set up bogus companies and convincing looking websites that claim to be operating on behalf of the UK Government.

 

Fraudsters cold call businesses and individuals offering the grant and if they’re interested direct them to fill out an online application form with their personal information.

Once the fraudsters have that information they’ll contact back victims and congratulate them on being accepted onto the grant programme.   
 

Pre-paid credit cards

 

Applicants are then asked to provide identification and are instructed to get a pre-paid credit card to deposit their own contribution to the fake Government grant scheme. Fraudsters will then contact victims on the phone or are emailed and asked for the details of their pre-paid credit card and copies of statements to in order for them to add the grant funds.

 

Of course the grant funds are never given by the fraudsters and the money that’s been loaded by the victim onto the card is stolen.

 

If you receive one of these calls, hang up immediately and report it to us. We’ve already taken down one website fraudsters have been using to commit this fraud and are working with Companies House to combat this issue.

 

How to protect yourself:

 

Be wary of unsolicited callers implying that you can apply for grants. You should never have to pay to receive a government grant, and they definitely won’t instruct you to obtain a pre-paid credit card. The government should have all the information they need if a genuine grant application was submitted, therefore any requests for personal or banking information either over the phone or online should be refused.

 

What to do if you’re a victim: 
 

  • If you think your bank or personal details have been compromised or if you believe you have been defrauded contact your bank immediately.
  • Stop all communication with the ‘agency’ but make a note of their details and report it to Action Fraud.
  • If you have been affected by this, or any other type of fraud, report it to Action Fraud by visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040. 
     

The information contained within this alert is based on information from gathered by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB).  The purpose of this alert is to increase awareness of this type of fraud. The alert is aimed at members of the public, local police forces, businesses and governmental agencies.

Vehicle Online Shopping Fraud

Fraudsters have been advertising vehicles and machinery for sale on various selling platforms online. The victims, after communicating via email with the fraudster, will receive a bogus email which purports to be from an established escrow provider (a third party who will keep the payment until the buying and selling parties are both happy with the deal).

These emails are designed to persuade victims to pay upfront, via bank transfer, before visiting the seller to collect the goods. The emails also claim that the buyer (victim) has a cooling off period to reclaim the payment if they change their mind. This gives victims the false sense of security that their money is being looked after by this trustworthy third party, when in fact it is not and the money has gone straight to the fraudster. 

Protect yourself:

  • When making a large purchase such as a new car or machinery, always meet the seller face to face first and ask to see the goods before transferring any money.
  • If you receive a suspicious email asking for payment, check for spelling, grammar, or any other errors, and check who sent the email. If in doubt, check feedback online by searching the associated phone numbers or email addresses of the seller.
  • Contact the third party the fraudsters are purporting to be using to make the transaction. They should be able to confirm whether the email you have received is legitimate or not.
  • False adverts often offer vehicles or machinery for sale well below market value to entice potential victims; always be cautious. If it looks too good to be true then it probably is.

If you have been affected by this, or any other type of fraud, report it to Action Fraud by visitingwww.actionfraud.police.uk, or by calling 0300 123 2040.

Warning - pre-recorded prank calls

There has been a recent rise of prank calls within Thames Valley. 
 The calls are pre-recorded generated responses giving the impression that recipients are actually speaking directly to someone.
 The calls are not all the same. However one of the main scenarios has been described as an angry Scottish man claiming you are stealing his Wi-Fi. 
 Sometimes there is a mobile phone number showing and other times the number is withheld. 
 It appears that these calls are predominantly targeting elderly and young people and can cause alarm and distress to the call taker.  

We urge people to take the following advice: 
 

  • Anyone with particular concerns can contact us on our Police non-emergency number 101. Otherwise ignore the call.
  • You can contact your local phone provider who may be able to put a block on these types of calls.
  • If you are getting calls at night you could put your phone on night mode or switch it off. 

River Webcam

Church Services

SERVICES FOR DECEMBER

 
Sunday 5 December – Patronal Festival
11.15am sung Matins (BCP) with hymns
followed by drinks in church
 
Sunday 12 December
 
11.15am sung Holy Communion (BCP) with hymns
 
Sunday 19 December
11.15am said Matins (BCP)
 
4.00pm candlelit service of 9 lessons and carols followed by
 
mulled wine and mince pies in the Parish Hall
 
Friday 24 December – Christmas Eve
9.00pm sung Holy Communion (BCP) with carols
 
Saturday 25 December – Christmas Day
11.15am children’s Holy Communion with carols
 
Sunday 26 December – no service at Remenham
 
 

www.remenhamparish.org.uk

Rectory Office – 01491 577340

rector.hwr@btinternet.com

 

We continue to hold a service every Sunday at 11.15am (details above).  The church is open daily from 9.30am to 4.00pm for private prayer.  

Cleaning protocols etc are in place in church.   

Rubbish & Recycling

Please click on the graphic above - thank you

Website Statistics

November 2021

1,359 unique visitors

2,493 pages viewed

 

Total for 2020

22,524 unique visitors

71,707 pages viewed

 

Total for 2019

23,107 unique visitors

67,374 pages viewed

 

Total for 2018

12,954 unique visitors 

48,218 pages viewed

 

Total for 2017

11,363 unique visitors 

35,942 pages viewed

 

Total for 2016 

10,546 unique visitors

30,430 pages viewed

Remenham Footpath Maps

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please email:

hello@remenhamparish.org.uk

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