Scotland

Information

The information on this page is of interest to U3A members.

Warning - TV Licence Refund Notification

One of our NW members has reported a recent TV Licence Refund SCAM sent by email and referring to a pending refund. It reads:

“After the last annual calculation we have determined that you are eligible to receive a TV Licensing refund of 72.48 GBP. Due to invalid account details records, we were unable to credit your account. Please submit the TV Licensing refund request and allow 5-10 working days to be credited your account. Click “Refund Me Now” and follow the steps in order to process your request. NOTE: For security reasons, we will record your IP address, the date and time. Deliberate wrong inputs are criminally pursued.”

Advice
Phishing is a type of attack that uses email or a messaging service to fool you into taking an action you should not take, such as clicking on a malicious link, sharing your password, or opening an infected email attachment. Attackers work hard to make these messages convincing and tap your emotional triggers, such as urgency or curiosity. They can make them look like they came from someone or something you know, such as a friend or a trusted company you frequently use. They could even add logos of your bank or forge the email address so the message appears more legitimate. Attackers then send these messages to millions of people. They do not know who will take the bait, all they know is the more they send, the more people will fall victim.

Protecting Yourself
In almost all cases, opening and reading an email or message is fine. For a phishing attack to work, the bad guys need to trick you into doing something. Fortunately, there are clues that a message is an attack. Here are the most common ones:

A tremendous sense of urgency that demands “immediate action” before something bad happens, like threatening to close an account or send you to jail. The attacker wants to rush you into making a mistake.
Pressuring you to bypass or ignore your policies or procedures at work.
A strong sense of curiosity or something that is too good to be true. (No, you did not win the lottery.)
A generic salutation like “Dear Customer.” Most companies, colleagues or friends contacting you know your name.
Requesting highly sensitive information, such as your credit card number, password, or any other information that a legitimate sender should already know.
The message says it comes from an official organisation, but has poor grammar or spelling or uses a personal email address like @gmail.com.
The message comes from an official email but has a Reply-To address going to someone’s personal email account.

You receive a message from someone you know, but the tone or wording just does not sound like him or her. If you are suspicious, call the sender to verify they sent it. It is easy for a cyber attacker to create a message that appears to be from a friend or colleague.
Ultimately, common sense is your best defence. If an email or message seems odd, suspicious, or too good to be true, it may be a phishing attack.

If you have been a victim please contact Police on 101, Action Fraud or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 if you would prefer to remain anonymous
Message Sent By
Willie Clark (NHWN, Community Engagement Officer, NW Scotland)

Free software licences for U3As
There is no need for any U3A in Scotland to pay commercial rates for the software you need to help run your U3A. A number of the big software and service companies make licences available free to Charities under their support for the Not For Profit Sector. This service is made available through an intermediary, Technology Trust, who make an admin charge for managing the distribution of software. If you are already a Charity you can register directly with tt-exchange and you can even access software on behalf of your members. If you are not a registered charity you can gain access to the service for use in the management of your U3A through your membership of The U3A in Scotland which is registered with tt-exchange. Click through to tt-exchange on the link on this page to see what is available.

On this page you will find:

  • U3A in Scotland Constitution
  • A document by Ed Link, Third Age Trustee for Scotland, on U3A Membership in Scotland.

Note: All documents are in 'pdf' format. To read them you need 'Acrobat Reader' which you probably already have. If not, it is available free from Adobe.