Conmen posed as police on phone and asked victim to withdraw cash from bank

Essex County Standard: Conmen posed as police on phone and asked victim to withdraw cash from bank Conmen posed as police on phone and asked victim to withdraw cash from bank

POLICE have warned the public to be on their guard after “despicable conmen” duped a man into withdrawing thousands of pounds from his bank account.

The man, aged in his late 60s, received a call from fraudsters telling him his bank card had been fraudulently used and two men had been arrested.

The caller, who identified himself as a DC West from Hammersmith police station in London, also told the victim to immediately call and cancel his debit card.

But when the pensioner, who lives in Coggeshall, called his bank, he was reconnected to the fraudster, who pretended to have cancelled his card.

After that call, on December 2, the man was asked to withdraw £8,000 from his bank account which he was told would be used in evidence against the two mythical suspects. It was to be collected by courier.

But before the money was handed over, the man contacted the local branch of his bank and was told to immediately cut contact with the callers and call the police.

An Essex Police spokesman said: “These scams originated in London and have moved into Essex, starting in the west of the county, but there is a real concern now these people are targeting residents in north and mid-Essex.

“They are sophisticated scams where the callers use all sorts of police ranks and I would urge people to stay vigilant.”

Det Insp Paul Maleary, of Essex Police, added: “The average age of the people being targeted by these despicable thieves is 77, but there have been victims in their 90s and in their 50s.

“Inmost of the recent cases, the callers claiming to be from the police say they are from Hammersmith or Holborn police stations and in the Met Police.

“People should remember that banks would never ask you to move money from one account to another and they would never ask you to hand over cash.”

In the past 12 months, there have been 530 attempted thefts in Essex. More than 80 people have been tricked out of money to a value of £274,000.

Comments (8)

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9:03am Fri 20 Dec 13

Steve1210 says...

Seriously...?
Seriously...? Steve1210

9:14am Fri 20 Dec 13

romantic says...

It sounds incredible that anybody could fall for a scam like this, but the point is that they target elderly people who do not know about these sorts of scams. People have to be cynical to the extreme. Luckily, it seems that he did get suspicious and contacted the police before they could get his money.

There are lots of scams out there, and it pays to know about them. Spend an hour reading up on them, so you're less likely to fall for them.
It sounds incredible that anybody could fall for a scam like this, but the point is that they target elderly people who do not know about these sorts of scams. People have to be cynical to the extreme. Luckily, it seems that he did get suspicious and contacted the police before they could get his money. There are lots of scams out there, and it pays to know about them. Spend an hour reading up on them, so you're less likely to fall for them. romantic

9:22am Fri 20 Dec 13

Citizen 139 says...

Steve1210 wrote:
Seriously...?
Afraid so, it's becoming an increasingly common scam. Another variation is that the "bank" will call and tell the victim they're sending round a courier to pick up the card. Said courier is one of the gang and away they go on a spending spree.
[quote][p][bold]Steve1210[/bold] wrote: Seriously...?[/p][/quote]Afraid so, it's becoming an increasingly common scam. Another variation is that the "bank" will call and tell the victim they're sending round a courier to pick up the card. Said courier is one of the gang and away they go on a spending spree. Citizen 139

10:01am Fri 20 Dec 13

PROOFREADER says...

I never answer my phone. If someone has called I dial 1471 to find out who called. I only call back if it is the number of someone I know.
I never answer my phone. If someone has called I dial 1471 to find out who called. I only call back if it is the number of someone I know. PROOFREADER

12:19pm Fri 20 Dec 13

HARRY438 says...

Ex-directory bliss.
Ex-directory bliss. HARRY438

1:24pm Fri 20 Dec 13

PROOFREADER says...

HARRY438 wrote:
Ex-directory bliss.
Being ex directory does not mean people cannot get hold of your phone number. I am ex directory and still get unwanted calls. Even sigining up for the telephone preference service does not stop them.
[quote][p][bold]HARRY438[/bold] wrote: Ex-directory bliss.[/p][/quote]Being ex directory does not mean people cannot get hold of your phone number. I am ex directory and still get unwanted calls. Even sigining up for the telephone preference service does not stop them. PROOFREADER

2:11pm Fri 20 Dec 13

Hamiltonandy says...

I registered with the telephone preference service but it does not stop cold calling from small UK firms, who lack resources to check, or foreign marketing/share boilershop call centres. The giveaway used to be an indian accent but now tends to be UK voices assuming you are their friend and it takes ages to find out what they are actually selling. Now I simply state they have the wrong number and hang up. An alternative approach is to tell them their product is hideous or does not work. Automated calls are dealt with by quietly letting them talk to the table.
I registered with the telephone preference service but it does not stop cold calling from small UK firms, who lack resources to check, or foreign marketing/share boilershop call centres. The giveaway used to be an indian accent but now tends to be UK voices assuming you are their friend and it takes ages to find out what they are actually selling. Now I simply state they have the wrong number and hang up. An alternative approach is to tell them their product is hideous or does not work. Automated calls are dealt with by quietly letting them talk to the table. Hamiltonandy

3:43pm Fri 20 Dec 13

Anabaric says...

Steve1210 wrote:
Seriously...?
Very much so, my nan received a call whilst I was visiting, she's the 90 year old they are talking about in the report.

The chap claimed to be from the met police in holborn, same script as above. I immediately interogated him regarding his badge number and a number I could call him back on. He got off the phone pretty quickly.

From talking to the police at the time I expect the scam goes a bit like this:

Phone up claim to be from police, scare them, now tell the victim to hang up, and immediately call the bank to cancel their cards.
Victim hangs up, Fraudster doesn't. - Line isn't broken -
Fraudster now plays recorded dialling tone back to victim.
Victim dials his bank, proceeds to give all security details to the fraudster.
[quote][p][bold]Steve1210[/bold] wrote: Seriously...?[/p][/quote]Very much so, my nan received a call whilst I was visiting, she's the 90 year old they are talking about in the report. The chap claimed to be from the met police in holborn, same script as above. I immediately interogated him regarding his badge number and a number I could call him back on. He got off the phone pretty quickly. From talking to the police at the time I expect the scam goes a bit like this: Phone up claim to be from police, scare them, now tell the victim to hang up, and immediately call the bank to cancel their cards. Victim hangs up, Fraudster doesn't. - Line isn't broken - Fraudster now plays recorded dialling tone back to victim. Victim dials his bank, proceeds to give all security details to the fraudster. Anabaric

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