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West Mercia Police Notice

TELEPHONE SCAM OPERATING ACROSS HEREFORDSHIRE

As already reported in the ‘Crime Prevention Alerts’ section of this Website, West Mercia Police have seen a recent increase in fraudsters claiming to be from various police services around the country.

In the latest scam across Herefordshire and Worcestershire there have been several successful and unsuccessful attempts to defraud people using telephone scams, including one in Bodenham. In some cases thousands of pounds have been successfully taken from elderly and vulnerable residents by criminals pretending to be police officers. West Mercia Police are asking for help from the public to warn the wider community and to pass on,
particularly to elderly relatives or neighbours, information about these scams and to ask them not to trust anyone who asks them for their bank details.

In a number of attempts a ‘DC Rose’ was used as an alias. The deception can also be carried out in several ways, such as:

  • A phone caller pretending to be a police officer who is investigating unidentified activity/ fraud in their bank account and that they must cooperate with the ‘investigation’.
  • The victim is then persuaded to withdraw funds and hand them over to the 'investigators', either by some remote means or in person to a courier.
  • The victim is told that, if the bank cashier queries the large withdrawal, they are to say it is for work/repairs in the home or Christmas shopping.
  • Alternatively the victim may be asked to hand over bank cards, vouchers or other valuable items. They may also be asked to transfer funds to another account, which is controlled by the fraudsters.

  • These scams can be extremely convincing and manipulative. The fraudsters may give (alleged) crime numbers, investigation details, and job titles. They will always claim that the transaction must be done in secret. The fraudsters condition their victim not to trust bank branch staff, which can make it hard for those staff to help.

    These calls are not genuine and payments should not be made. No legitimate bank/building society, police officer, or business will ever phone you to ask you to give them your card, your PIN, or your cash in the way we've described above.

    West Mercia Police Detective Sergeant Jon Cooper from the Economic Crime Unit said: "Don't trust anyone who calls you about your bank details. Always hang up and wait 10 minutes to ensure the call has disconnected before calling 101.

    “If you want to check they are legitimate, find their number via directory enquiries and call them back.

    “Use a different telephone to make sure the line is clear. If they are genuine, you should be able to get through to them. You can also check what they are saying is true with your bank.

    “The scam can be very elaborate, very convincing and cruel. If you think someone is trying to scam you, tell someone straight away. Don't be pressured. Give yourself time to stop and think.

    Please remember the police will never contact you asking for your bank card or cash. If someone does, it's a scam – provide no details and hand nothing over, hang up and report it immediately to Action Fraud at https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/ or 0300 123 2040."


    Most of the above has been taken from the West Mercia Police Website. To see the full report please go to https://www.westmercia.police.uk/news/west-mercia/news/2019/november/telephone-scam-operating-across-herefordshire-and-worcestershire/

    Finally, to see/ download two posters which may be useful in spreading the word to vulnerable relatives or neighbours please click on the ‘more details’ link below.


    Date: 24/11/2019
    Link: Click here for more details

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