POLICE have warned people in Swindon and Wiltshire to be alert to phone calls that they believe are attempts to scam people out of money.

Last week, officers received several reports of residents, primarily living in Swindon, receiving phone calls from men posing as police officers and requesting bank details and money.

The ‘officer’ is reported as saying that they have arrested a young male, who is a relative of the person being called, and they have been caught with a large amount of cash on them.

Police said: "Other similar scams are where a bogus officer will call a person saying there is a warrant for their arrest due to non-payment of fines; they then offer the person the opportunity to pay there and then.

"In some calls, a bogus officer will outline that they need the help of a person to uncover a fraud plot, and will tell them they need to move cash.

"Conversations have moved on to credit cards and money, often with the scammer suggesting that a courier could come and collect them from the victim.

"These are just a few examples of how criminals will pose as bogus officials to try and steal money from an unsuspecting victim.

"Please be assured that police officers (and banks) will never cold call residents in this way and ask for card details.

Police officers will not ask you to pay fines over the phone, and will not ask you to transfer money or cards. If you receive a call of this nature hang up immediately.

"Please could we ask that you talk to your elderly relatives or neighbours so they are aware of this scam and if you think they have fallen victim, please call us immediately on 101. Alternatively call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040."

They also have a useful website with tips on how to spot and avoid fraudsters: www.actionfraud.police.uk

If you have any information that could help with enquiries into these particular scams, please call 101. Always call 999 in an emergency.