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    • omelette451
    • By omelette451 20th Jan 09, 4:09 AM
    • 1,873 Posts
    • 1,188 Thanks
    omelette451
    • #2
    • 20th Jan 09, 4:09 AM
    • #2
    • 20th Jan 09, 4:09 AM
    Have you tried googling the company that rang you? If they ring back ask for a contact name and ring the number in the phone book or on the website - if it's genuine you'll always be able to get the right person through the central switchboard.

    If that doesn't work try ringing the police switchboard and ask who handles the advertising for their magazine. If you explain your reasons I'm sure they'll be willing to help - in any case it could be preventing a crime!
    • trisontana
    • By trisontana 20th Jan 09, 7:26 AM
    • 8,922 Posts
    • 13,626 Thanks
    trisontana
    • #3
    • 20th Jan 09, 7:26 AM
    • #3
    • 20th Jan 09, 7:26 AM
    This is a well know scam. Small businesses are contacted and are asked if they want to place adverts in publications supporting the police or fire service. Usually these magazines are never published, or if they are in very small numbers.

    Another twist to the story is that when the business just says they might be interested, and they want more details before they say yes, the adverts still goes ahead. Then if that business refuses to pay up, they are threatened by debt collectors.

    The companies that operate this scam mostly seem to located in the Manchester area. Several have been closed down by the authorities, but new ones are always opening up.
    What part of "A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo" don't you understand?
    • Tallymanjohn
    • By Tallymanjohn 20th Jan 09, 8:41 AM
    • 1,050 Posts
    • 597 Thanks
    Tallymanjohn
    • #4
    • 20th Jan 09, 8:41 AM
    • #4
    • 20th Jan 09, 8:41 AM
    There was a legitimate one of these a few years ago, I seem to recall the company was called Diamond Media, and I advertised in it - a wall calendar that was being distributed by the local police to all houses in the locality. It went quite well, but every year since then I've been getting unsolicited calls from other companies asking me to buy a 'sponsorship ad' (retired firefighters & such-like) in 'one-off' things like diaries, calendars etc. In every case I've checked out the organisation being sponsored do not know the company involved - it's just a scam & the usual line is 'you get an extra 10% off if you pay now by debit card' - that's the point at which I cut them off. There may well be legitimate ones out there but, as mentioned, Google the company and also ask for a back copy of the publication to see what you get for your money.
  • BFG
    • #5
    • 21st Jan 09, 7:38 AM
    • #5
    • 21st Jan 09, 7:38 AM
    This fraud is second only to VAT fraud in the Northwest [HMRC]

    It's the same handful of people behind all of them
    • sillyvixen
    • By sillyvixen 23rd Jan 09, 7:49 PM
    • 2,948 Posts
    • 4,462 Thanks
    sillyvixen
    • #6
    • 23rd Jan 09, 7:49 PM
    • #6
    • 23rd Jan 09, 7:49 PM
    i had a call from someone selling advertising space for a police/fire service magazine - he asked to speak to the franchise owner, when i told him we were a company run store he hung up! i think its a scam, advertising companys usually try to get head office details to contact in this situation.
    Dogs return to eat their vomit, just as fools repeat their foolishness. There is no more hope for a fool than for someone who says, "i am really clever!"
    • trisontana
    • By trisontana 23rd Jan 09, 8:01 PM
    • 8,922 Posts
    • 13,626 Thanks
    trisontana
    • #7
    • 23rd Jan 09, 8:01 PM
    • #7
    • 23rd Jan 09, 8:01 PM
    Here are two stories from this week's Mirror about these scams:-

    http://blogs.mirror.co.uk/investigations/2009/01/red-sky-in-the-morning-warning.html

    http://blogs.mirror.co.uk/investigations/2009/01/educational-support-publicatio.html
    What part of "A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo" don't you understand?
  • minnow001
    • #8
    • 30th Jan 09, 2:48 PM
    • #8
    • 30th Jan 09, 2:48 PM
    Many thanks for your replies and advice. The call I had came at a time when I was really busy and I agreed to advertise in this booklet. Today a copy of this very poor quality booklet arrived together with a demand for payment. I note there are a number of local businesses who are advertising including local restaurants and public houses. Following on from the information posted by trisontana (mirror report) what would be my position if I refused payment and cancelled my verbal order?
    I feel very stupid now that I didn’t see this as a scam
    • sarahg1969
    • By sarahg1969 30th Jan 09, 3:35 PM
    • 6,430 Posts
    • 10,822 Thanks
    sarahg1969
    • #9
    • 30th Jan 09, 3:35 PM
    • #9
    • 30th Jan 09, 3:35 PM
    This fraud is second only to VAT fraud in the Northwest [HMRC]

    It's the same handful of people behind all of them
    Originally posted by BFG
    http://www.theboltonnews.co.uk/news/4087089.Warning_after_couple_s___200_book_bill_sho ck/
  • BFG
    As I paid by personal credit card, and have not heard anything from them, can I not pursue a "Dispute" through my credit card company for the money back?
    Originally posted by robram2
    yes indeedy you can!!!

    Either try a chargeback..if it's fairly recent, or failing that a Section 75 refund
  • knottycrocodile
    We are a small family run company and my son took a call from ESM Community Media, an advertising company purporting to be publishing a magazine in conjunction with the local emergency services. He did not express any firm interest but told them to send details. We have now received a magazine entitled "Services Magazine" with no advertising in it. Also received was an invoice for £97 for advertising with them, a sum which included £2 p & p.
    Needless to say we will not be paying them, nor will they be advertising for us.
    I will, however, be contacting the Police advising them that ESM are using their name to exhort monies from the public.
  • max2009
    http://esmcommunitymedia.com/index.html
  • max2009
    This fraud is second only to VAT fraud in the Northwest [HMRC]
    Originally posted by BFG
    A lot of people i know made millions through this in stoke-on-trent which customs said was the VAT capital of europe One guy sent £38 million through a phone scam via defunct roofing company in just 3 months.Another was behind a £138 million phone scam and was ordered to pay back £26 million or they will add time on his sentence.I do not condone it and they deserve everything they get as it is taxpayers money at the end of the day.
    • Stephb1986
    • By Stephb1986 29th Apr 09, 10:22 PM
    • 6,103 Posts
    • 8,405 Thanks
    Stephb1986
    It's a scam been there and done that only it was for the NHS where the doctors and nurses would be given the booklet over 5000 supposedly, and a gold card. Paid in the region of £200-£350 I think, only it wasn't distributed as other people who had advertised in it called us up and asked if we had any custom from it.

    So any calls like that tell them to run and jump.

    Steph xx
    • vikingaero
    • By vikingaero 29th Apr 09, 10:41 PM
    • 10,291 Posts
    • 12,983 Thanks
    vikingaero
    We've received calls from these scam companies. There's a new twist to it as they pretend to be Police Officers or Firefighters:

    "Hello, can I speak to the business owner please? Mmy name is WPC Dibbles, from Wythenshaw Police Station, I'm working voluntarily to raise funds for our calendar/diary etc etc."

    When you call back the number you get someone pick up the phone just saying "Hello"
  • BFG
    W There's a new twist to it as they pretend to be Police Officers or Firefighters:

    "Hello, can I speak to the business owner please? Mmy name is WPC Dibbles, from Wythenshaw Police Station, I'm working voluntarily to raise funds for our calendar/diary etc etc."

    When you call back the number you get someone pick up the phone just saying "Hello"
    Originally posted by vikingaero

    They are taking a massive chance saying they are the police...

    Suggestion, anyone who gets a call should record it and ask them who they are again [to get it on tape] , then call the local police station and let them know...
    • HellsGranny
    • By HellsGranny 17th May 09, 12:17 AM
    • 298 Posts
    • 248 Thanks
    HellsGranny
    I got caught by one of these years ago when I started a business. The scam was for '999 Diary' which was supposedly issued to all Emergency Service personnel. It came up either on Watchdog or Roger Cook's programme. Boy, did I feel an idiot, but these con artists were very plausible.
  • slogger
    Esm
    l had a call today from ESM today, and get this, now the booklets are to be left in Supermarkets for customers to pick, Ha Ha if you believe that will work you must live in cloud cuckoo land, l smelt a rat immediately, and told them where to go, they were quite persistant though, l had to hang up in the end, and they record what you say so be very careful what you say on the telephone.
    Please Please do not give these scamsters anymore money.
  • savethedosh
    Esm community media
    Can any body please tell me if this advertising company is genuine?
    • hollydays
    • By hollydays 13th Jun 09, 6:29 PM
    • 15,249 Posts
    • 11,022 Thanks
    hollydays
    Is it not the same company as mentioned above?
    Why what have you been offered?

    I usually find they say something ambiguous like "I am calling on behalf of the Police".
    Last edited by hollydays; 13-06-2009 at 6:34 PM.
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