Courier fraud warning after couple scammed by criminals posing as police officers
Wiltshire police are urging people to be vigilant after a couple were defrauded by scammers posing as police officers.
The couple were contacted over the phone by a man who claimed to be a police officer investigating fraud.
He told them that someone had attempted to use their bank card fraudulently and even told them to dial 999 to speak to their local force.
But, he kept the line open, meaning the victims were still speaking to the fraudsters.
The victims then followed the instructions of the criminals, still believing they were police officers, and withdrew a large amount of cash, which was collected by someone pretending to be a courier.
Det Con Emma Wood, from Swindon CID, said this case showed how convincing and persuasive these types of fraudsters can be.
She said: "The victims in this case genuinely believed they were speaking to police officers and that they needed to cooperate with their requests or they could lose more money to fraudsters or even be arrested for perverting the course of justice.
"This is why it is so important that we remind people of the simple steps they can take to avoid being scammed in this way.
"Please remember, a police officer would never ask you to withdraw money and give it to them.
"They would also be able to meet you face-to-face and show you ID, and would be happy for you to verify their credentials by calling 101.
"If you receive a suspicious phone call then please hang up the phone and report it. Don't feel worried about appearing rude, it is better to be safe than sorry."
She added: "We would also like to urge people to speak to their friends and family members about these types of cases, particularly those who are elderly or vulnerable - we want to protect as many people as possible."
Your bank or the police will never call you to ask you to verify your personal details or PIN by phone or offer to pick up your card by courier. Hang up if you get a call like this.
If you need to call your bank back to check, wait five minutes; fraudsters may stay on the line after you hang up. Alternatively, use a different line altogether to call your bank.
Your debit or credit card is yours – don’t let a stranger take it off you. You should only ever have to hand it over at your bank. If it’s cancelled, you should destroy it yourself.
Spot the signs
Someone claiming to be from your bank or local police force calls you to tell you about fraudulent activity but is asking you for personal information or even your PIN to verify who you are.
They’re offering you to call back so you can be sure they’re genuine, but when you try to return the call there’s no dial tone.
They try to offer you peace of mind by having somebody pick up the card for you to save you the trouble of having to go to your bank or local police station.
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