Warning over fraudsters claiming to be police officers in North Yorkshire

Residents in North Yorkshire are being urged to remain vigilant after a spate of fraudsters impersonating police officers.

Friday, 22nd October 2021, 10:44 am
North Yorkshire Police have received several reports of scammers impersonating officers over the phone in the area.

North Yorkshire Police has issued an urgent warning after a surge in reports of residents being targeted by a scam where callers claim to be a police officer.

The victim is called by someone claiming to be a police officer, and in recent incidents has used the bogus name 'DC Thomas Daniels' from 'Paddington Police Station', and informs them that they have arrested someone who is using the victim's bank card/s.

Andy Fox, North Yorkshire Police's Financial Abuse Safeguarding Officer, said: "This is a scam we have seen a number of times over the years but people continue to fall victim because the scammers are so effective at manipulating their victims."

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The scammer then advises the victim to go to their bank and withdraw all money from their account, telling them a police officer will attend their home to collect the money and take it for safekeeping whilst investigations continue.

Officer Fox continued: "They will often provide reassurance by getting other scammers to pose as different police officers and call the victims to further convince them the scam is legitimate.

"A key alarm bell in this scam is that the victim is told to lie to the bank about why they are withdrawing the money and this is something the police will never ask anyone to do.

"Whenever we provide these warnings, we often hear people comment that they would never believe something which is so obviously a scam but until you are in that situation, it’s impossible to judge.

"The key thing to remember is that the police or your bank will never call you and tell you to move or withdraw your money. If this happens, it is definitely a scam and you should hang up immediately."

In advice to residents, North Yorkshire Police said the police or bank will never ask you to withdraw or transfer money, and if you are ever told to lie to your bank it is definitely a scam.

Criminals can spoof telephone numbers, making it appear they are calling from a known bank customer service or police number so do not trust the number displayed on the caller ID.

If you are ever in any doubt about who you are speaking with, hang up immediately. If you are worried it may be a scam, call 101 to report it to police.