Thames Valley Police is warning residents to be vigilant following a series of courier fraud incidents, which have involved offenders posing as police officers conning elderly people into handing over money.
Offenders have targeted residents in the Chiltern and South Bucks area with 18 offences this year (from 01/01).
Imposters have been calling residents pretending to be from the police and claiming there has been a fraudulent transaction made from their bank card or account and then asking for their help to catch the offender. The resident is then told that their bank may be involved and asked to withdraw cash to establish whether their bank are circulating counterfeit notes.
Once the resident withdraws cash, the scammer then asks them to read out the serial numbers on the notes which they confirm to be counterfeit. They then arrange to send a courier to collect the ‘counterfeit’ cash.
Detective Sergeant Daniel McKenzie based at local CID at Taplow Police Base said: “This type of crime can see the victim scammed out of a substantial amount of money.
“There are many other variations on this including being told there is an issue with your bank card or bank account and getting you to reveal personal information, including your PIN number. Once they have your information, a courier will be sent to collect the card, which they can then use to withdraw money from your account.”
“Scammers frequently emphasise the need for discretion and tell the resident they cannot speak to friends or family due to it being part of an ongoing investigation and tell them they cannot speak to the bank as they are not trustworthy and are being investigated. This is designed to isolate the resident.
“To ensure you don’t fall prey to this type of scam, remember that in no circumstances would your bank or the police ask you to take such actions. These types of request will only come from a fraudster.
“Please take note and share our advice to stop more people falling victim to this crime.”
Thames Valley Police advice to protect yourself:
- Never tell anyone your PIN number
- Never give personal information or bank account details to anyone over the phone
- Never hand over your card, money or valuable to someone at the door to be sent off elsewhere
- Police or banks will never ask you to withdraw or transfer money to help them
If someone comes to your door claiming to be a police officer, always ask to see their identification. Close the door and call 101 to check they are genuine, a real police officer will not mind waiting whilst you check.
For more information on how to keep your personal details and identity safe visit Thames Valley Police or Action Fraud website.