Today I received a WhatsApp post in a group representing a sports team that my daughter plays for. It had a convincing picture of a Cadbury’s hamper and said that Cadbury’s were giving everyone in the UK some free chocolate to help improve morale during lockdown.
Apart from the fact that the UK population could probably bankrupt Cadbury’s by taking them up on this offer, here are a few reasons that the link should have raised alarm bells.
The address bar in the browser shows that the website is insecure. Any large corporate like Cadbury’s or their PR agency would use a secure site. (You can identify secure sites by the fact that they have a padlock next to them).
If you click in the address bar, you can see that the address starts with “http://” rather than “https://”
At first glance the address looks OK. (It’s been designed to look that way). It includes the “cadbury.co.uk” and “giftclub” but if you think carefully about the address you can see that the domain is “uk-gifthamper.club”.
Please excuse the mixed metaphors in the title of this post. I’ve found my self thinking about this regularly in recent weeks, prompted by two observations.
I’m constantly required to slow down on motorways for apparently non-existent hazards. I don’t mind slowing down when it is obvious that traffic is building up or when there is likely to be congestion, but I’m increasingly finding that Matrix signs display a temporary speed limit for no apparent reason.
I slow down, everybody else slows down. We drive for a few miles and then all speed up again. As well as increasing wear and tear on cars, increasing pollution and frustrating drivers, this has implications for safety. The more often this happens, the less notice drivers tend to take of the warnings, increasing the chance that when something actually happens and the signs are needed, people will ignore the warnings.
The Met Office continually announces “yellow weather warnings” which fail to materialise. Over the last 2 weeks, the North of England must have had at least 3 or 4 warnings of hazardous conditions. These continually fail to materialise. This is the dire warning on my phone one days last week, next to the distinctly “frost free” view from my bedroom window.
The weather reality consistently fails to be as bad as the forecast. Although this is more of a frustration, than a hazard, unlike my first observation. It still annoys me.
A few years ago, I spotted an image of an old “Below zero” badge on a Fylde Scout Group website. I really fancied getting these badges for our Scout blankets or for use as an “occasional” badge. Unfortunately the badges are no longer made, so I got in touch with a badge manufacturer to see if they could help out. I updated the design and had some made.
I’ve managed to get my local District Commissioner to approve these as “occasional” badges to be worn on uniform for Cubs and Scouts who have camped out on nights when the temperature has fallen “below zero”. Even without uniform approval, they make great badges for camp blankets / scarves.
The badges are 40mm x 50mm and they’ve been selling for £1.50 each on eBay.
When I can avoid eBay and PayPal fees, I can offer them for £1.20 each with postage charged at cost price.
Get in touch if you’re interested in buying these badges and enjoy your Winter scouting 🙂