Farmers Warned on Grant Rip Off

Meanwhile elsewhere in Shropshire…


Two Councillors are warning Shropshire Farmers to be on the lookout for a Grant scam following a spate of incidents along border counties over the last few years.

Heather Kidd, Shropshire Councillor for Chirbury and Worthen said "Farmers are being warned to be on the alert for fraudsters aiming to get their hands on key European Union grant payments being made this month.

"The criminals typically pose as a bank or other financial institution, occasionally the police. They call their intended victims claiming that a fraud has been detected on their account and then persuade them to hand over financial information or ask them to transfer money to what they claim is a 'safe account'.

"Although this sounds too obvious a con, it's surprising how many people fall for it. Last year at this time several farmers in my area were contacted by such fraudsters. Now we have been warned by West Mercia police to be on the look out again."

Cllr Richard Huffer (Clee Hill Division) who farms in Bitterley and on Clee Hill added " Unfortunately information about those in receipt of the funds – including their name and how much they are to be paid – is publically available, which allows criminals to directly target victims, making the con more convincing. At this time of year payments begin to arrive into bank accounts, through the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) which is the EUs main rural payment scheme and the conmen target the activities accordingly.

""It is vital that farmers, and other recipients of the payment, are alert to these scams and are very wary of any phone calls, texts or emails out of the blue asking for personal or financial information, or to transfer money to another account. If you do get any calls of this nature hang up and contact your bank and the police."

Both Councillors are now launched a campaign using websites, e-mails and social media to alert farmers of the dangers.


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Source: Shropshire Liberal Democrats