Two people in their 90s targeted by bogus calls in which caller claimed to be a police officer
15:40 12 March 2014
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Police are urging the public to pass on advice to elderly people they care for after two bogus phone calls were received in the Fakenham area today.
A man and a woman, both were in their 90s, were called by someone claiming to be a police officer.
The woman was told someone had tried to access her bank account. She gave the caller her solicitor’s details and no account information.
The man was told to go to the bank, withdraw all his money and then call the “officer” back. Police were alerted by bank staff when the man arrived. The man had also left his phone off the hook at the request of the caller.
Superintendent Stuart Gunn said: “I urge everyone to remain vigilant against these scams, and especially ask anyone with elderly relatives and neighbours to inform them about the tactics these conmen employ.
“Hopefully awareness of these scams is increasing, with publicity about a number of similar incidents in both Norfolk and Suffolk. Fortunately the bank staff were concerned about the man’s request and called police so he didn’t withdraw any money or hand it over.
“I cannot stress how important it is to tell everybody that they should never give out card or PIN numbers over the phone and that banks or the police would never ask someone to withdraw cash or hand over bank cards to anyone.”
Police are continuing to carry out inquiries into today’s phone calls, anyone with information should contact Norfolk Police on 101.
Officers are urging residents to be extremely careful when dealing with any unknown callers and to never give out personal information or to hand over cards or money in these circumstances.
Police advise people to remember the following, and alert older family members and friends to the tricks the scammers can use:
• Your bank or the police will never ask for your PIN, bank card or bank account details over the phone – never give these details out.
• The police will never call you and ask you to withdraw money from your account, and will never ask you to handover bank cards, to give to a courier or taxi driver, regardless of how convincing the caller may seem.
• If you receive such a call leave the landline for at least five minutes to make an outside call. Fraudsters will keep the line open and have been known to play ring tones, hold music and a recorded message down the phone so the victim believes they are making a call to a legitimate number.
• Use a friend’s or neighbour’s telephone instead.
• Friends, family, carers and neighbours are asked to spread the word to ensure everyone is aware of this scam and not to give out personal details.