Cheshire Police is warning residents across the county not to fall foul of Courier Fraud following reports in Crewe, Nantwich and Chester.
Courier fraud is when the offender cold calls the victim posing as an official such as a police officer or a member of a banks fraud team.
They will instruct the victim to go to their bank and withdraw money. The offender will claim that they are investigating staff at the bank that they need the victim's help in some kind of undercover operation, for example they may claim that bank staff are handing out counterfeit bank notes and they need the victim to withdraw money so that it can be examined.
The offender will then send a courier to collect the money from the victim.
There are many variations of this scam, which may involve the victim handing over bank cards or high value items.
In one recent incident, a Crewe elderly couple were contacted by an offender posing as a Greater Manchester Police Officer. He told the victims that people had been accessing their bank account using blank cards and instructed them to withdraw money which was to be handed to a courier using a password system.
DC Liz Rankin said: “Over £5,000 sterling and 2,000 euros was handed over to a man who called at their home. The victims described the offender as about 5'2"-5'3" with dark skin and straight black hair. He was of slim build and aged around 20-years-old.”
If you have any information please contact DC Liz Rankin from Crewe CID on 101 quoting incident number 516 of 4 January 2018. Alternatively information can be given anonymously by contacting Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Here’s some advice on how to avoid the scam:
- The police will never ask you to become part of an undercover investigation or for you to withdraw cash and hand it to them for safe-keeping.
- Be wary of any calls, texts or emails purporting to be from the police asking for your personal or financial details, or for you to transfer money
- If you are approached, or feel something is suspicious, hang up the phone and don’t reply.
- Then report it to police on 101, Action Fraud and your bank on their advertised number.
- Visit takefive-stopfraud.org.uk for more advice on how to stay safe from scams.