Fraudsters posing as police officers and bank employees target Cheltenham residents
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The Cheltenham Local Policing Team is asking residents to please be vigilant of scammers claiming to be police officers who are targeting people in the town.
Reports have been received of scammers targeting residents on Gratton Road, Hatherley Road and Ashlands Close today (Monday).
Two reports involved residents who was called by a fraudster posing as DC James Maddison from the Police. He told the victim that they had arrested someone who was found to have their bank card and started asking questions about their banking habits.
Another report involved scammers posing as bank employees who told the victim of fraudulent transactions on their account which had raised concerns and stated that they needed to provide personal details. The victim contacted their bank and the transactions could not be found so were deemed to be false.
Fortunately all of the victims recognised that this was a scam and did not provide any details to the fraudsters but instead contacted police.
Neither police nor bank officials will ever ask you to withdraw money from your account, purchase anything or hand over your personal details or passwords.
Telephone numbers can easily be spoofed (faked) so anyone who gets a call which they are suspicious about is advised not to give any information but to tell the caller to write to them as they will have all their personal details.
The Telephone Preference Service (TPS) is free and can help reduce the number of nuisance and scam calls you receive. To register, please visit: https://www.tpsonline.org.uk/register
More advice to help stop you from becoming a victim of fraud is below:
• If you believe you are being targeted by a scammer hang up the phone and use a different phone line to call Action Fraud or the police, as scammers have a way to stay on the line and will pretend to be the police when you call back.
• If you don’t have access to a different phone line, wait for a period of time and try calling a family member or friend first to make sure the scammer is no longer on the line.
• Just because someone knows basic details about you like your address or date of birth, it doesn’t mean they are genuine employees/callers.
• Always question suspicious phone calls and report them to Action Fraud or the police.
• Always have a pad and pen next to the phone, if you get a suspicious call, take details, don’t get flustered, get names addresses and contact numbers then disconnect the call.
Anyone who believes they have been the victim of fraud can report this to police by calling 101 or calling Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
Additional advice on Fraud can be found here: https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/fa/fraud/