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Trading Standards Service Plan 2023 to 2024

5.0 National Priorities

National Trading Standards Board (NTSB)

NTSB is a group of Chief Trading Standards Officers, representing all regions across England and Wales. The work of the Board is funded by the Government as part of changes to the consumer protection landscape and the development of an enhanced role for Trading Standards. The NTSB provides leadership, support and resources to help combat consumer and business detriment across regional and national boundaries. A vast amount of work has been carried out pulling together a national strategic assessment for Trading Standards based on intelligence to identify those areas causing the most detriment to consumers and businesses.

From this strategic assessment, the NTSB has developed a control strategy which outlines the national priorities for intelligence, prevention and enforcement activities.

For 2023/24, NTSB has identified the following priority areas:

  • mass marketing scams
  • doorstep crime and cold calling
  • energy related fraud
  • lettings and estate agency
  • fair trading - used cars
  • fair trading - other misleading practices
  • intellectual property
  • illegal tobacco products

The NTSB has also recognised that the internet and especially social media is a selling platform of choice for rogue traders and is therefore a cross cutting issue across all priorities. As such e-crime is embedded across all the key priority areas of work, in particular looking at those enablers that allow criminals to function, such as, web site hosting, payment providers, fulfilment houses, bank accounts, intermediaries etc.

Another cross cutting theme and enabler is serious and organised crime groups, working across regional and national boundaries.

These priority areas provide a focus for regional and local regulatory activity and collaborative working with partner organisations, delivering national outcomes through local action. Local authorities are empowered to use local discretion and autonomy to select the most appropriate ways to meet the regulatory priorities in their locality.

The Service has considered these national priority areas when setting its own key priorities for 2023 to 2024.