Merseyside Police has issuing a warning and advice to communities across Merseyside after fraud offences targeting elderly people in Wirral.
In each of these offences, victims have received a phone call from a person claiming to work for communications, insurance or carbon credit companies, asking for bank card and account details in relation to an insurance policy or bogus refunds. Following multiple calls, the ‘company’ has then taken payment from the victim.
These offences are now being investigated by Merseyside Police, after being referred by the UK’s national reporting centre Action Fraud.
Detective Inspector Alan Georgeson, part of the force’s Economic Interventions team, is urging people to pass on advice to help ensure vulnerable people are not targeted in this way: “These are despicable offences which target the most vulnerable in our communities, and we are determined to find those responsible and bring them to justice.
“Companies never make unsolicited phone calls to request personal or financial information, or to ask that you transfer money in return for a large amount of payment. You should treat all cold calls with scepticism and trust your instincts.
“These offenders often target elderly or vulnerable people who might not be aware of the right thing to do. I would ask that anyone who looks after elderly people or has vulnerable family or friends makes them aware of what to do should they receive any suspicious phone calls, emails or knocks on their door.
“Don’t feel pressured to stay on the call or give out personal information, if it doesn’t feel right then simply hang up.
“If further assurance is needed individuals or their family can contact the firm directly using the phone numbers obtained from their contract or other trusted sources. If possible, call the firm directly from another phone just in case the scammer remains on the phone line.”
Anyone who has lost money to a scam like this should report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or more advice can be found at www.actionfraud.police.uk. You can also report any suspicious activity to local officers, contact our social media desk @MerPolCC or 101.