Warwickshire Police is urging people to be alert following a series of phone scams, in which a bogus police officer calls to say that there is a problem with the victim’s bank card.
On Wednesday 4th February, bogus calls were made to three people in Leamington Spa from a man pretending to be a police officer from Scotland Yard. On each occasion, he told the victim that their bank card was being used by criminals in Birmingham. He asked the victims to call 999 in order to verify his identity, but he remained on the line so if they had attempted to ring 999 potential victims might have thought they had got through to the real 999 service and police as he would imitate it.
In previous instances these scammers have asked the victims to call their bank, but remained on the line again fooling victims into thinking they had got through to their bank and thus convincing them to hand over bank details. Fortunately in each of yesterday’s incidents, no one handed over any personal details.
Warwickshire Police is urging people to be vigilant to the scam, which is often targeted at elderly people.
Detective Chief Inspector Sean Paley said “We are continually urging people to be vigilant to the scam. Please remember:
- Police officers, and banks never ask for account details or PINs over the phone.
- Police officers, and banks never come around to your house to collect bank/credit cards or property.
We would encourage anyone with elderly relatives or friends to mention this and talk to them about this scam so they are aware and can be on their guard.
If you receive a call like this, hang up immediately and call police on 101 using another telephone (because if the scammer does not put the phone down at their end they are still likely to be on the line when the receiver it picked back by the potential victim to make an outgoing call).
If you do not have a mobile or secondary phone then go to or alert a neighbour, friend or relative and ask to use their telephone.
Always be vigilant and ensure that when you pick up your phone to make a call check you can hear the normal dialling tone. If the line is silent or a voice speaks to you then the scammer is still present, don’t respond and replace the receiver.
If it’s an emergency please dial 999