Lincolnshire Police warning over bogus calls to set up courier fraud
Police are concerned about people falling victim to a crime known as courier fraud.
The scam, which has seen people in the Stamford area swindled out of thousands of pounds, begin with a criminal cold calling their victim.
They claim to be a police officer or bank official, and say the householder will need to withdraw money because it is not safe in their account, or that it will help with a police investigation. They may be told to buy high-value items.
A ‘courier’ will then come and pick up the cash, bank card or goods on the behalf of the police or bank.
Gillian Fleet of Lincolnshire Police said: "The fraudster can be very convincing, and will often already know many of your personal details."
Seven offences of this nature were reported in the Stamford area during a single week in July last year, with one woman in her 60s handing over £10,000 in cash to a courier who came to her door. Another woman lost £6,300.
Police are concerned more crimes of this type are emerging and want people to warn relatives and neighbours.
How can you protect yourself?
Your bank or the police will never…
- Call and ask you for your PIN or full banking password
- Ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them
- Ask you to transfer money out of your account
Police advise people to hang up on any phone call that is concerning, then wait at least five minutes before contacting the bank or police on a trusted number, such as the one on the back of the bank card.This ensures the fraudsters are not still on the line.
Most telephone providers now offer a free call blocking service.
Alternatively a call screening telephone can be purchased, or a call blocking device which plugs into existing telephones.
Stop: Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.
Challenge: Could it be fake? It's ok to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
Protect: Contact your bank immediately if you think you've fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
More by this authorSuzanne Moon