Action Fraud is the national fraud reporting service. It is run by a private company on behalf of the National Fraud Authority, which falls under the Home Office.
They have issued a fraud warning about three forms of the same scam.
Individuals have been receiving phone calls from people claiming to be a police officer or banking official.
The three different scenarios presented to different victims are:
- Claiming that there has been fraudulent activity at the victims’ bank and that the staff at the bank are involved. The victim is then asked to withdraw money to either keep it safe or assist the police with their investigation.
- Claiming that a business (such as a jewellers or currency exchange) is fraudulent and that they require the victims’ assistance to help secure evidence by purchasing jewellery or by exchanging a large amount of currency to hand over to the police.
- Claiming that the victims’ card has been compromised and used to purchase goods by a suspect, the victim is requested to withdraw their money to keep it safe or hand over their bank card to the police
Occasionally the victim will be told to dial a non-emergency extension of ‘161’ to receive confirmation of the individual’s bogus identity, the bogus official will advise the victim to lie about the reason for the withdrawal or purchase if challenged by staff, as the staff member is involved in the fraud
A courier attends the victim’s home address to collect the goods the same day Often the victim is given a code word for the courier as a way of authentication
Your bank or the police will NEVER:
- Phone and ask you for your PIN or full banking password
- Ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them for safe-keeping
- Ask you to transfer money out of your account
- Send someone to your home to collect cash, PINs, cards to cheque books
If you receive one of these calls, please do not hand over money, and report it to Action Fraud.