A TOWN resident who was told a fraudster had spent £700 on her bank card has been praised for her vigilance in foiling the ‘real’ scam.
The Malvern woman was called by an imposter claiming to work for the Metropolitan Police, who said a suspect had been arrested for illegally spending the money on her debit card.
However when she rang the number on her card as prompted, the sharp witted resident recognised the person on the line was actually the same as the previous caller and realised it was a scam designed for her to disclose confidential bank details.
Police have revealed the cold callers do not put down the receiver from the first call to trick victims into thinking they have rang someone legitimate from their bank.
On the same day, two other residents in the county from Droitwich and Worcester also hung up when similar attempts were made to obtain their details.
In both instances the fraudster claimed to be from Hammersmith Police, and forces have warned generally the tricksters usually pretend to hail from the London area.
Det Chf Insp Sean Paley, said: “In all these cases the women involved were vigilant and became suspicious. They took the right action to prevent themselves falling victim to this scam.
“They either refused to do what the caller asked, questioned what the caller said or noticed the callers voice was the same as the one believed to be a bank employee.
“The police are investigating all of these incidents but it is absolutely vital people are aware of what is happening and do not divulge personal or financial details to strangers who either phone them or come to their home.”
After the recent spate of similar incidents police have stressed banks or officers would never request such information over the telephone or come to the house to collect them.
Residents have been urged to call 999 or 101 if they are approached by bogus cold callers and to cancel their card immediately if they do happen to disclose any financial details.
A West Mercia Police spokesman added: “If you phone the bank use the number on your banking details not one given to you by the caller and if someone comes to your door saying they are a police officer, remember that genuine officers always carry a warrant card.
“If you have any doubts make them wait outside while you phone the police force. Genuine callers will understand.
“Do not be embarrassed to report a fraud if you have been affected. This is a national scam and you are not alone, many people have been taken in by it.”
Information can also be passed on anonymously to Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555 111.