Gloucestershire Police have issued a warning after residents of the county were targeted by phone scams.
Fraudsters were reported to Stroud and Cirencester today.
In one case, a trickster called a 70-year-old woman in Cirencester, claiming to be a Brixton police officer. They said someone used their bank card in London and they made an arrest.
In a separate incident, reported shortly after 11:30 a.m. today, a 90-year-old man from Stroud was called by someone claiming to be a police officer. The caller said he was from Paddington Police Station and that they had arrested someone for using their bank card.
These are both scams and Gloucestershire Police are urging people to let their friends, relatives and elderly neighbors know what is going on.
Scammers often ask the person they called to hang up and dial 999 to confirm they are a police officer, but they leave the phone line open and you end up talking to the same person or someone who work with them.
Fortunately, in these two reported cases, the two were not deceived and instead called the police on a different line.
Scammers often pick a dial code and target an area with many phone calls for several days before moving on to another location.
Anyone who receives a similar call should hang up and not follow their instructions.
These police officers issued the following advice:
- Neither the police nor bank officials will ever ask you to withdraw money from your account, buy anything, or hand over your personal information or passwords.
- If you think you are being targeted by a scammer, hang up the phone and use another phone line to call Action Fraud or the police, as the crooks have a way of staying on the line and will pose as the police when you call back.
- If you don’t have access to another phone line, wait a while and try calling a family member or friend first to make sure the scammer is no longer online.
- Just because someone knows basic details about you, like your address or date of birth, doesn’t mean they are actual bank or police employees.
- Always question suspicious phone calls and report them to Action Fraud or the police.
If you believe that you or someone you know has been the victim of fraud, you can report it to Action Fraud online or by calling 0300 123 2040. For more tips on fraud, visit: https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/fa/fraud/personal-fraud/