Police are urging members of the public to be vigilant following a number of telephone scams across the county.
One incident happened on Monday (8 February) when the victim, a woman aged in her 70s and from the Wymondham area, was contacted by a fraudster purporting to be a police officer. During the call the victim was encouraged to transfer large amounts of money from her bank account, after being coerced into believing that she was part of an undercover police operation. She was conned out of £30,000.
Another incident was also reported on Tuesday (9 February) when the victim, a man aged in his 20s, and from the Norwich area was again contacted by a fraudster purporting to be a police officer. The caller had cloned the Norfolk Constabulary number, making the victim believe he was speaking to a genuine police officer. £20,000 was taken.
Officers have also received 15 reports within the past two weeks in which victims have been contacted by fraudsters claiming to be police officers.
Courier Fraud happens when a fraudster contacts a victim by telephone claiming to be a police officer, bank or from a government department, among other agencies. A number of techniques will then be adopted in order to convince the victim to hand over their bank details or cash, which may then be passed on to a courier.
Residents are reminded that neither the police nor your bank will ever ask you to withdraw or transfer money or purchase items.
Further advice includes:
- Police officers, banks and other government agencies will NEVER ask you to withdraw money or transfer it to another account as part of an undercover operation.
- They will NEVER ask you to reveal your full banking password or PIN.
- The police will NEVER ask you to handover money for safe keeping or as part of an operation.
- The police will NEVER send someone to your address to collect money, cards or PIN Numbers or ask you to deliver these to another location.
Try these steps if you are approached:
- STOP – take a moment to think before parting with your money or information.
- 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 have fallen victim to a scam. Report it.
You can confirm requests are genuine by using a known number or email address to contact organisations directly. Ask for ID from individuals who have approached you in these circumstances.
If you’re asked to telephone a bank, then always do it on a different phone to the one you were contacted on.
Officers are particularly keen for members of the community to ensure they contact family and friends, particularly elderly relatives to ensure they are aware of these scams and the warning signs.
If anyone has received a similar type of telephone call or has any information about these incidents. Contact Norfolk Police on 101 quoting Operation Radium.
Alternatively, Contact the independent charity Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111.
If you believe a crime is in progress, always call 999.
For further advice, head to the Action Fraud website: www.actionfraud.police.uk or call 0300 123 2040.