Cybercrime, Fraud and Scams

In this section, you will find further information relating to Cybercrime, Fraud and Scams

Cyber Crime - Old Crimes, New Tools

Cybercrime is any criminal act dealing with computers and networks.

The Internet is an exciting and interesting tool, but the increase in on-line banking and shopping is being met by a rise in its use for criminal purposes. Criminals carry out cybercrime from the comfort of their own home, office or Internet café. They can work alone and commit crimes anywhere in the world.

Be Cyber Aware is the local Community Safety Partnership’s localised version of the government’s campaign on how to stay secure online. This has been developed with the support of Staffordshire Police’s Cyber Crime Unit and the National Cyber Security Centre.

Explore the six actions that need to be taken to keep you and your family safe whilst online. These include:

  1. Using a strong and separate password for your email
  2. Creating strong passwords using 3 random words
  3. Saving your passwords in your browser
  4. Turning on two-factor authentication (2FA)
  5. Updating your devices
  6. Backing up your data

View our virtual guide with further information about each of the six actions.  


A growing problem where offenders try to steal identity (usually bank details). First you receive an unsolicited e-mail, apparently from your bank.

  • A genuine looking e-mail apparently from your bank, or more recently from PayPal or Apple, says they are reviewing accounts or have some problem that requires you to confirm your account details.
  • The e-mail contains a link to an on-screen form for you to complete which will be bogus and gives crooks your account details.

Remember: Banks, building societies or other finance bodies won't ever contact you for these details and e-mails like this should be treated with great suspicion. Do not reply and delete the email.

Safe Surfing Tips Keep virus/firewall software up to date

  • Install anti-spyware
  • Keep your operating system up to date
  • Think before replying to unsolicited e-mail
  • Never send your account details to anyone
  • Never pay for goods using Western Union


Fraud is when trickery is used to gain a dishonest advantage, which is often financial, over another person

See the Fraud Booklet for information on how to protect yourself from fraud and scams.


Scammers use email, online ads, pop ups, and search results to trick you into sending them money and personal information. One way to outsmart them? Use your email's spam filter to screen the email you get. Then forward any email that seems suspicious to

A scam is a scheme to con someone out of their cash. Many scams take the form of bogus and fraudulent offers sent by post, telephone or e-mail.

Top10 Scams





Cheque, Plastic Card and Online Bank Accounts (not PSP)

Involves, for example, cards and card details being used for gambling and shopping online, as well as debit cards being cloned


Other Advance Fee Frauds

Includes scams for PPI claims, scams involving compensation for bank charges, and motor scams where the buyer requests an upfront fee to secure the sale of the vehicle at a cost to the seller


Other Consumer Non Investment Fraud

Involves the purchase of items which are often subsequently found to either not exist, be inferior to those originally stated or are stolen


Online Shopping and Auctions

Online Shopping and Auctions Fraud involves a wide variety of methods, including bogus websites, or the exploitation of legitimate sale platforms and spoofed payment services, that whilst looking legitimate, are in fact controlled by the fraudster. Another recent scam involves fraudsters exploiting online shopping applications


Dating Scam

Involves the befriending of a victim over social networking or chat rooms and, after a relationship is struck, they use emotive reasons to persuade the victim to send money


Computer Virus \ Malware \ Spyware

Involves sending computer virus' or programmes which are designed to harm the computers of the people who receive them


Hacking - Social Media and Email

Involves gaining unauthorised access to a person's email/social media account/s


Rental Fraud

Involves advance fees/rent being paid in respect of rental of premises that don't exist, are not for rent, are already rented or are rented to multiple victims at the same time


Ticket Fraud

Involves the purchase of tickets for an event such as a concert or holiday where it transpires that the tickets don't exist, don't materialise or are related to a company that doesn't exist



Includes all other fraud by false representation or obtaining services dishonestly, that are not covered elsewhere

There are no borders in cyberspace, posing challenges for police in investigating cyber-crime incidents which may involve suspects, victims and crimes spanning multiple countries and on a global scale. INTERPOL assists member countries in sharing and consolidating information on known cyber incidents, and analyses this information with the aim to produce actionable intelligence for use by police on the ground.

Was this page useful?

A-Z of services