Category: Website Review

Identify Ransomware

If you are hit by Ransomware, you need to block off the attack by removing Internet access from your PCs and  servers,  stop any encryption processes in progress and any other processes running that shouldn’t be running.

Then the first stage of investigation is to identify what you’re facing and the website is a good starting point.

You upload one encrypted file or the file that is the ransom message to this website and it will try to identify the variant of ransomware. Currently it can identify more than 500  different variants.

For each there is extra information which can tell you if there are decryption keys available on the Internet.

Some anti-hackers try to find the decryption keys and post them freely, but the blackmailers do know this and try to stay of ahead of them by using new variants for which there are no keys available except for the one held by the blackmailer.

The website is run purely as a free service to the public and does not decrypt files for you – you need an IT  professional for that (assuming it’s possible as many cannot be decrypted without a key from the blackmailer)

If you have a suspected virus rather than ransomware then there is a website that may help to identify it  at

As always, the advice is that it’s best to avoid being held to ransom – ensure you have adequate systems protection in place, staff that have been educated on the danger of cyber attacks, regular backups (including off-site) and have a plan in place to deal with a ransomware attack.

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Trust Pilot Customer Reviews

Trustpilot is an online review community founded in Denmark in 2007 by  Peter Holten Mühlmann.

The website has more than 32 million reviews of 179,000 businesses and 1,000,000 new reviews each month created by 45,000 reviewers each day. So you can see this is a serious business and also that there must be a huge need for unbiased reviews of businesses.

Trustpilot “believe that people’s voices should be heard, which is why we’re dedicated to helping everyone share their genuine experiences. We’re committed to being the most trusted online review community on the market. Genuine reviews written by consumers are published instantly without censoring, and businesses can see and reply to them”

TrustPilot say they have zero tolerance for fraud and investigate any reported misuse

How Does TrustPilot Make Money?

They offer a series of packages to businesses for a monthly subscription.

The key sales points for these are:-

  • Connect with your customers by collecting reviews
  • Automate a review collection process seamlessly into your customer journey.
  • Build trust on a platform for both businesses and customers
  • Gather feedback and interact with customers on an independent website consumers trust.
  • Showcase your reputation where it matters
  • Amplify your presence across all channels including search, social, paid, and offline media.

The four business plans are:-

Collect & respond to Trustpilot reviews for free. Showcase reviews on your website & clearly demonstrate marketing ROI. Give your marketing & sales a significant boost with a wide range of customizable tools. Full access to Trustpilot Business with superior integrations, data protection & account management.


If you want to build trust for your company. Then Trust Pilot  may be able to help.

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Strange Happenings at was set-up some time ago to warn people about the many varieties of romance based scams that go on.

There is a lot of information to help people to avoid being scammed, but recently the site seems to have been taken over by a business that advertises dating sites.

These are legitimate sites, so no real problem but it is odd that such a business would acquire a scam warning site.

The scam warnings are still on the site but there are also lists of reviews of dating sites and recommendations on dating sites to use.

Perhaps it was a temporary issue but the Report a Scam button didn’t work for me.

Do you know anything of what’s going on with this site? Let me know.

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Scam Survivors Help

The website says it exists because: Scammers will take your money with no cares about the lives it ruins.  People are nothing but a money amount to them – a living, breathing ATM machine.

The site is run by volunteers and has three goals:

  1. To make scammers’ lives harder by exposing their details and scripts to search engines.
  2. Educating the public, thus removing scammers’ sources of income as scams will continue as long as there are victims.
  3. Helping people to see that, even after being scammed, they CAN move forward and things DO get better.

They cover a wide range of scams including:- 419, fund transfer, tax refund, beneficiary/inheritance/next of kin, hitman, parcel, gold/diamond, charity, love/romance/catfish, dying widow/widower, military, lottery, secret shopper/work from home, business/investment/supply invitation, loan, ATM card, tax refund, recovery/compensation, conference, Craigslist, webcam blackmail, phishing, grandchild/friend in distress and car wrap.

The website staff offer  non judgmental help and advice for those scammed online.

For many people who have been scammed, the psychological effects are worse than the monetary loss.

There is an active forum with 145,000 posts.

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38 Degrees Campaigns

38 Degrees is one of the UK’s biggest campaigning communities, with millions of members.



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38 Degrees say they are independent of all political parties. They are driven by issues and outcomes, and judge all politicians by the same standards regardless of what party they belong to.

They don’t take money from political parties, government or big business.  The campaigns are powered by small donations from thousands of 38 Degrees members averaging about £12 per donation.

If you have an idea to make your community, or the country, a better place, Campaigns by You helps you make it a reality. 38 Degrees let everyone create petitions, organise meetings, and win campaigns on the issues close to their hearts.

38 Degrees launched in 2009 and now has over 3 million people involved in the campaigns.


  1. They helped stop the government’s plans to sell off our ancient national forests.
  2. They stopped plans for a massive mega-dairy in Lincolnshire.
  3. They stopped Donald Trump’s plans to build a golf course at the expense of families in Menie, Scotland, who were at risk of eviction.
  4. They also helped convince the government to sign up to the EU Directive on human trafficking.
  5. They forced the 2012 Olympic sponsors not to dodge their tax.
  6. They stopped eBay from selling illegal bee-killing pesticides.
  7. They helped make sure plans to cover up investigations into MPs expenses were scrapped.

Current campaigns

38 Degrees members campaign on a variety of different issues all year round – from keeping privatisation out of our NHS, to keeping libraries open, to stopping Murdoch’s power grab of BSkyB. We’re concerned with defending fairness, protecting rights, promoting peace, preserving the planet and deepening democracy.

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The Consumer Action Group

The Consumer Action Group is an online forum which provides free support and advice to anyone with consumer problems.

This covers dealings with banks, credit companies, retail organisations, employment, armed forces – you can see its wide reaching and it’s a huge forum with over 385,000 members and 4.8 million posts.

There’s also a library of information about consumer rights, an out of date blog, an email newsletter, access to webmail, a consumer action group magazine and more.

But really it’s the forum that makes it work and that’s where people can get free advice.

If you’re new to using a forum – basically people pose questions and any other member is free to post answers or comments. You don’t have to post something if you don’t want to – you can simply search and read on anything that interests you about being a consumer.

The site is paid for by donations and by advertising. Most of the adverts are at the top of the pages so once you scroll down they are out of sight.

The forums cover all forms of consumer action from buying to being an employee and there is a community centre with advice on how to stop smoking, technical support for electronic devices, cost cutting tips, weight loss etc.

This is a comprehensive and useful resource generally on being a consumer but especially if you have problems with a supplier’s products or service. Whatever the problem, there is likely to be someone on consumer action group who has been through it before and may be able to help you.

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Safe From Scams Website

SafeFromScams was created in 2010 to offer information on how to protect yourself against scams.

The sales pitch for the site is:-

“It’s a very dangerous world out there. You might lock your doors.. The scammers are everywhere. They want to part you from your hard-earned money, to steal your identity, or simply take advantage of your honesty to make a profit from others. You might be law-abiding, but they’re not. There are thousands of them, in person, in business, on the phone and online – and they’re growing more ingenious all the time”.

They say that the site is the resource to learn about scams of all types, from the classics that are still being run regularly, like bill-padding, builders, and chain letters – which still work – to the new ones that keep appearing, things like phishing, mobile phone scams, or those fake lotteries.

The website was created seven years ago as at that time, there was no single UK resource for interesting features and practical advice on how to stay safe from scams.

They say that the features and articles are written by experts – who have experience, or a particular interest in this area.

The guy who started Safe From Scams is John Rowlinson – the owner of PtS which has software and property companies and he uses those to fund the Safe From Scams website and a number of similar sites.

The site covers a wide range of scams, including Credit Card Scams, Travel Scams, Fake Goods, Medical Scams and is a great resource for more detailed information on the various kinds of scams.,

There is also an ‘Ask the Expert’ feature.

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Cold Caller Number Lookup

It is estimated that each day, twelve million people in the UK receive one or more cold calls.

Have you received a scam call or an annoying cold call and wished you could register their phone number online to warn others about them?

Or do you want to know if a caller is a scammer or cold caller?

Go to   to check their number or register the caller’s number as ‘bad’.

Bad Numbers is a reverse telephone number lookup website and has collected over 20,000 ‘bad’ telephone numbers so far.

The website is very simple – you just type in a number and see if it is already registered. If not and you want to register it then you type in why and that’s about it.

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The Identity Theft Resource Centre

The Identity Theft Resource Centre (ITRC) is a non-profit organization that supports victims of identity theft in resolving their cases, and broadens public education and awareness in the understanding of identity theft, data breaches, cyber security, scams/fraud and privacy issues.

It is for American citizens only. You can call the ITRC on a Freephone number and they provide no-cost case mitigation and consumer education to approximately 10,000 victims and consumers annually. ITRC maintains records of data breaches and publish the list each week.

ITRC aim to:-

  • Educate consumers, corporations, government agencies, and other organizations on best practices for fraud and identity theft detection, reduction and mitigation
  • Serve as a relevant national resource on consumer issues related to cybersecurity, data breaches, social media, fraud, scams and other issues.

The ITRC also conduct research and surveys in collaboration with partners and sponsors resulting in white papers, fact sheets, and solutions to educate consumers and businesses.

They believe that prevention and reduction of identity theft will require education and cooperation between consumers, businesses, law enforcement agencies, and legislators.

ITRC is a very useful organisation and they help a lot of people each year.

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Victim Support


VICTIM SUPPORT is an independent charity that works towards a world where people affected by crime or traumatic events get the support they need and the respect they deserve. They help people feel safer and find the strength to move beyond crime. Last year they offered support to just under one million people.

If you’ve been affected by crime, Victim Support can support you to move forward. The services are free, confidential and available to anyone in England and Wales, regardless of whether the crime has been reported or how long ago it happened.

Contact Victim Support by phone on their national number (08 08 16 89 111 ) or by local phone number or go online.  (The care team in Surrey is on 0808 168 9274)

Practical help

Being a victim of crime can lead to all kinds of practical problems. This can range from minor issues (such as damage to your property or having to fill in insurance forms), through to serious medical problems or the loss of your home. While emotional support can help you to deal with your feelings after a crime, practical problems often act as reminders of what you’ve been through and make it harder to get your life back under control.

That’s why they also offer help with sorting out the practical implications of crime.

They can help with simple tasks like filling out forms (for compensation claims, for example), getting broken doors and windows fixed and installing burglar alarms. they can also assist with bigger problems such as getting medical treatment, getting rehoused or dealing with the criminal justice system over the course of your trial. They’ll give you the information you need to understand your options and next steps.

Everyone reacts to crime differently, which is why their services are tailored to individual needs. They’re here to help anyone affected by crime, not only those who experience it directly, but also their friends, family and any other people involved.

About Victim Support

The main source of income is from Police and Crime Commissioners and other statutory and non-statutory bodies for the essential services that are provided to victims.

But Victim Support relies on donations to help fund projects and services for other service needs. Donations are vital to help them work for a world where people affected by crime and traumatic incidents get the support they need and the respect they deserve.

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