Surrey Police are reminding people to be on their guard against fraud, after two incidents were reported last week.
Police say that in one of them a person was conned out of around £50,000, while the other was stopped by a concerned friend before any money could be taken.
In both incidents, the victims were contacted by a fraudster impersonating a police officer – a frequently used line, police say – trying to persuade the victims to part company with their money, under the pretence that it was part of an investigation into fraud.
Tandridge Borough Commander, Inspector Dan Gutierrez, said:
“This type of fraud is a national issue and can affect anyone.
These criminals create a feeling in the victims that they are being specifically targeted as part of a conspiracy.
We will look to hunt them down, arrest them and put them before the courts as fraudsters are not welcome in Surrey.
We urge the public to be alert and report incidents of this to us and help us bring them to justice.”
Police have given some tips:
“The Bank or the police will not ask you to withdraw money from your account.
The Bank or the police will not ask you to hand money to a courier or any one purporting to be a courier.
If you receive a call from someone purporting to be from the bank or the police and you want to be sure they are who they say they are. Use a different phone if you can to call a recognised number for your bank and 101 for the police. If you don’t have another phone hang up and check that you have a clear dealing tone (a tactic of these offenders is to stay on the phone, that means that even if you hang up a land line phone the line could still be linked to the caller).
Never give your PIN number (the police will never require this).
Never agree to handing your card to a courier.
These criminals will make you believe there has been an emergency or put you in some kind of fear (usually financial loss).”
Police say that by recognising the danger signs, people can be better prepared to defend themselves from the criminals.
Anyone who has received a call of a similar nature, or who has any information that may help the police’s investigations, is asked to call 101.