All posts by Mike

Clubs “Good Practice Guide.”

This document was put together by the Metropolitan Police Firearms Enquiry Team together with representatives from the British Shooting Sports Council.

You may recognise one or two of the photos in the guide, so you can guess where the main input from the BSSC came from.

I’d particularly like to bring to your attention a statement in the foreword-

“We must do whatever we can reasonably do to support the continued lawful practice of target shooting, whilst protecting public safety.”

Rob Atkin MBE (T. Commander, Met police Armed Policing)

The whole document rests on honest and clear co-operation between the police and the clubs, and if all police forces and clubs were to adopt this guide, we’d be in a much better place than we are at present.

Met Police Clubs Good Practice Guide.

This document is worth reading as it explains a lot about the relationship between clubs and firearms licensing departments, and while the Home Office have started to charge for things which weren’t chargeable before, the main thrust of the guide remains good.

More tax (attacks?) on Target Shooting Clubs

The Home Office have just published their response to the consultation of various fees for Firearms related businesses, clubs and schools.

They are –
Club first time approval grant    £444
Club renewal                                     £372
There are also other fees for such things a changing the secretary, club name, etc, varying between £300 & £36.

These are far less than the original proposals but still a very considerable hike from £84 for both grant and renewal, and NO fee for variations. to quote the Home Office – “The review led to fees that are approximately 58% lower than those proposed in the consultation.”

We have always tried had to keep costs to a bare minimum to Phoenix members, but these extras will have to be factored into our subscriptions or range fees over the coming  years.  but basically it means that our costs will rise by £60 a year, although paid out in a lump sum every six years – 2020 being our next renewal.

That’s £60 a year we will not be able to use for the benefit of the club or the sport.

 

The Sealand dates we have asked for from May Onwards

The current system of booking ranges at Sealand has become bureaucratic and slow.  Previously we put our bids in for a year (as we did this year) and were provided with one calendar for the year.

Now, having submitted our bids for the year they are being sent out roughly monthly, a month at a time which makes planning difficult. We still  (9/4/19) don’t have our May dates yet.

To try to help you we’ve listed the dates we’ve bid for below, but we can’t guarantee that we’ll be granted all of them.

Sealand B Range 11th May 2019
Sealand A Range 25th May 2019
Sealand A Range 8th June 2019
Sealand B Range 22nd June 2019
Sealand A Range 6th July 2019
Sealand A Range 20th July 2019
Sealand A Range 3rd August 2019
Sealand B Range 10th August 2019
Sealand A Range 7th September 2019
Sealand A Range 21st September 2019
Sealand A Range 5th October 2019
Sealand B Range 19th October 2019
Sealand A Range 2nd November 2019
Sealand A Range 16th November 2019
Sealand A Range 30th November 2019
Sealand A Range 7th December 2019
Sealand A Range 21st December 2019

BREACH OF DATA REGARDING SOME FIREARM CERTIFICATE HOLDERS – and security advice.

The National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NaBIS) has discovered a security and data breach involving firearm (and shotgun?) certificate holders.

The data is from 2010 -11 and was posted in 2015 so is not a new, but NaBIS are taking action to make victims aware and advise on security.

The personal details of 180 people are on XXXX website, and it details their home address, financial information, firearms purchased and the value. It appears that it may be from a Finance company given the information listed but the source is yet to be ascertained.  The National Crime Agency Cyber team are investigating and the data breach has been reported to the Information Commissioner.

The Head of NaBIS I has sent out a report to all forces  ask that they make contact with those individuals affected and to offer the following advice:

Information for Victims:

  • Your personal details have been published on a website on the internet
  • They include passwords, bank account details, salary, home address, telephone numbers and employer names as well details of firearms you may have purchased
  • Research indicates this data was obtained around 2010-2011 and then posted on a website called “Pastebin” in 2015
  • Reassure victims that this is an old data breach that has only just come to the attention of the Police
  • The National Crime Agency’s Cyber Crime Unit is now investigating the circumstances of this data breach
  • The data breach has been reported to the Information Commissioner
  • Provide security advice on safe storage of their firearms in the property or when travelling with them in any vehicles
  • Advise them that the Shooting Organisations will have security advice should they need anything further.
  • Tell them to report any suspicious activity to the Police on 101 or in an emergency dial 999
  • This information does appear to have been picked up on by the press who may try to contact them using the information on the XXXXX site
  • The Police and NCA do not advise people to go on to the XXXXX web site.

Enquiries are on-going to try to identify the source for the data breach.

OUR ADVICEAs Firearm or Shotgun certificate holders, we should all be aware of the risks posed by criminals wishing to obtain our guns illegally.  This is NOT a rumour – we know that – recently, and in the North-West – target shooters have been attacked and or their firearms stolen.
The Firearm Security Handbook 2005 at –

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/firearms-handbook-2005

Gives plenty of advice, but to bring it up to date a bit – we advise individual certificate holders, and those traveling with firearms –

1. DO NOT post information about the dates and/or places of your future shooting activities on Facebook, Instagram etc. as this will alert anyone with criminal intent to the whereabouts of firearms, and the fact that your home may be unoccupied.

2. DO NOT give away information on such public websites which could identify you personally as a firearm certificate holder (IE: full name, or home address, details for shooting activities etc.)

3.When traveling to and from shooting venues, be aware of the potential for a criminal to follow you.

4. When loading/unloading firearms etc from vehicles, be aware of your surroundings – anyone or anything suspicious? Move on.

5. Note the registered numbers of any vehicles you believe to be suspicious or unusual at your shooting venue, school or home.

6. Be aware of local police station (if any, nowadays!) so that if you believe your vehicle is being followed by someone with evil intent, you can go there for safety.

Twittubeface

As an experiment, I’ve started a twitter account under the “tag” @ShootersPhoenix .

It may be of use to us – I don’t know – but please, if you think it’s any use (or if you think it’s a waste of time !)  let us know.