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Police warning over telephone scams targeting the elderly

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Police investigating a number of incidents where elderly victims have been defrauded of tens of thousands of pounds, are urging residents of North Yorkshire to be vigilant.

Organised criminal gangs operating across the UK and abroad are carrying out telephone scams to carry out fraudulent transactions by convincing the victims they are calling from their bank.

The warning comes after an elderly woman in her seventies from York lost almost £300,000 and a couple in their eighties from the Ryedale area lost over £300,000 pounds through several fraudulent transactions.

Detective Sergeant Ben Bowles, of North Yorkshire Police’s Major Fraud Investigation Team said:

“The fraudsters who operate these scams are highly organised and very adept in convincing people that they are legitimate.

“They often use clever tactics to gain personal information from the victim, which they will then use to trick the victim into trusting them.

“Under no circumstances would a legitimate bank official ask you to transfer money from your bank account over the telephone.

“A simple technique to safeguard against this type of crime is to use a “safe” number. Write down the telephone number for your bank which you know is one hundred percent legitimate and if you have any doubt whatsoever that the caller may be a fraudster, end the call and use your safe number to contact your bank.

“We are also appealing to families and friends of the elderly. It is really important you help to ensure that they are vigilant against this type of crime. Make sure they are aware of these scams and how they can try and prevent it.”

For more information and advice visit www.northyorkshire.police.uk/fraud

 

Last modified: June 22, 2016