Following the launch of Action Fraud last week, Wiltshire Police has produced a leaflet for the public detailing the current scams used by fraudsters to trick people into departing with their money.
Some of these scams are not new, but continue to be used by fraudsters because they are ‘tried and tested’ methods. These include letters stating that you have won a lottery abroad and cold calls asking whether you require an unsecured loan.
Other scams covered by the leaflet are not so well known but are equally as effective, one example being the ‘fraud recovery fraud’. This concerns a second cold call stating that the product or service that you bought as a result of the first cold call does not exist or is fake.
The person calling then states that they have been employed by the government of that country to investigate, but require a fee upfront in order to return your money to you.
Temporary Detective Sergeant Sam Hopkinson of the Complex Fraud Team, said: “Fraud is an extremely distressing crime and one of the few crimes where victims are often too embarrassed to report it to police.
“This is usually because they feel that it is somehow their fault for being taken in; but fraudsters are very persuasive and often target the most vulnerable people in our communities.
“This leaflet is designed to inform people about the most current scams and provide advice on what they should do if they are unfortunate enough to become a victim of fraud.
“The most important piece of advice I can give to the public is to remember that if it sounds too good to be true it usually is.”
The ‘Are you a victim of fraud?’ leaflets are available from Enquiry Offices and from Neighbourhood Policing Teams (NPTs).
Anyone wishing to report an incident of fraud should contact the national reporting centre for all fraud and cyber crime, Action Fraud.
The most convenient way to do this is by visiting their website www.actionfraud.police.uk.
Online reporting takes an average of 20 minutes. Once the form has been started it will need to be completed in one session. It is therefore important that the reporting person has all the relevant information they need to hand.
Alternatively Action Fraud can be contacted by calling 0300 123 2040.
Any crimes in action should always be reported to Wiltshire Police via 999.