Residents urged to remain vigilant following report of courier fraud in Blackwater area
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Police are urging residents in Hart and Rushmoor to remain vigilant following a recent report of courier fraud.
This type of fraud typically sees a victim receive an unexpected call from someone who purports to be a police officer, a staff member from their local bank, or an employee from an internet or phone provider.
They then tell the victim that their account has been subject to fraudulent activity, or is in danger of being closed and then request the victim assist them with the ongoing investigation, with this involving:
Being asked for details about their financial accounts and bank cards,
Being sent to their bank to withdraw money, or being asked to buy high value goods, or
Granting the caller access to their computer or phone, by downloading an application.
Yesterday, officers received a report that a man in his 80s had been scammed out of £8,000 after a suspect visited his home address in the Blackwater area.
The man had received a phone call from someone claiming to be a police officer from a London police station.
He was told that his bank cards had been cloned and that he needed to withdraw £8,000 from two bank accounts.
A man, who has been described as being Asian, 5ft 9ins tall, with dark hair and of medium, muscly build then came to his door.
The man refused to hand over the money, which had been placed in an envelope, but it was snatched by the courier, before he ran away from the scene.
Officers are investigating this incident and our enquiries are ongoing.
Detective Constable Michael Dumbleton, from the Economic Crime Unit, said: “These fraudsters are heartless individuals who prey on some of the most vulnerable people living in our area.
“Victims of courier fraud can be any age, but are typically aged between 70 and 89 and I would urge everyone who has an elderly relative to make them aware of this type of fraud.
“These incidents can often have a huge impact on victims as they come to terms with the fact they have fallen for a scam, and the financial losses that come with it.
“We do not want anyone to fall victim to these scammers and we are taking steps to inform residents of courier fraud; so that they are aware of this type of contact and can avoid becoming a victim.
“If anyone receives a call of this nature, they should not engage with the caller and hang up.
“We are wholly committed to investigating offences of this nature and will take steps to identify and bring those individuals responsible to justice.”
Please remember that:
Police officers, banks and other organisations such as HMRC will never call people in this way and ask you to withdraw money or disclose personal or financial information. If someone does do this, please hang up – it will be a scam.
If someone calls claiming to be a police officer, ask for their ID number and police force. Wait at least five minutes before verifying details with the appropriate Force by calling 101 – do not use any number they provide unless you can confirm it as genuine. Ensure the call has disconnected as scammers will often leave the line open or use another phone altogether. A genuine police officer will not mind waiting while you check their identity (it’s a sign that it is a scam if the person becomes pushy or stresses urgency).
Take a step back from everything and take a few moments to think. Speak to a trusted friend or relative for their opinion before agreeing to anything. The fraudster’s tactic is often to keep the victim busy talking and isolated. They stress that they should not tell anyone else about the call.
Your bank or the police will never send a courier to your home to collect cash, bank cards, PINs or other valuable goods.
Never hand money or your bank card/pin to someone at the door to be sent off elsewhere.
If you are a friend, relative or carer of someone you think might be vulnerable to this type of scam, please speak to them about this advice. You might be the only person who can stop them from being scammed.
Anyone with information relating to the Blackwater incident should call 101 and quote the reference number 44230341985.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of fraud, report it to us by calling 101. If a crime is in progress, dial 999.
You can make yourself aware of this type of scam and how to protect yourself by visiting the Action Fraud website (https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/) or by calling them on 0300 123 2040.