A pensioner from Crowborough has been conned-out out of £5,000 by fraudsters.
On Monday the 79-year old man received a telephone call from someone impersonating a police officer.
The caller, who claimed to be a PC Ian Baker from Paddington Green police station in London, told the victim his card had been cloned and they had arrested someone for it. The fraudster then asked the OAP to put £5,000 in a taxi, the victim handed-over the cash.
There were nine other attempted frauds reported in Eastbourne and Crowborough with the caller using a similar method, saying he was a police officer, and that the victim’s card had been used to buy luxury goods, and they needed to call their bank or give them their bank details.
Fortunately none of the people called gave any details and immediately contacted Sussex Police.
Detective Sergeant Dave Tye said:
Thankfully nine people became suspicious of the caller and either asked for a number to call back on or ended the call. Unfortunately the man in Crowborough believed his card had been cloned and has handed over a large sum of money.
Sussex Police say it is good many people are already aware of this scam and are taking our advice. But they urge local people to help make elderly friends and neighbours aware of the scam, as they are targeted and more vulnerable to this criminal activity.
This particular scam involves somebody phoning up a resident pretending to be from a Police Force. They tell the resident that they have counterfeit money in their bank or there has been fraudulent activity on their account. They ask them to withdraw a large amount of money and arrange for a taxi/courier to attend and collect it.
Officers say legitimate organisations would never ask for bank or card details over and phone and we urge people to stay vigilant and to never pass on these details. Similarly the police will never ask for money to be placed in a taxi to be taken elsewhere.
Anyone receiving such calls should wait at least 10 minutes for their line to clear and if the opportunity arises dial 1471 to obtain the caller’s number. Once certain that the line is clear use your phone, mobile or alternative line, and phone Sussex Police on 101 to report your suspicions.
If you would like to discuss scams crimes in more detail you can contact your Wealden Police who will be more than happy to give advice.