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Police warn public to be alert after scam incidents

Thursday, 9 November 2017

POLICE in Derry City and Strabane are calling on the public to be alert to scams.

The warning has been issued following an increase in reports in recent days within the Strabane district involving scam callers purprting to be from BT and PPI claims.

Officers have confirmed that in some cases the fraudsters have been successful in swindling people.

They are urging local people to be vigilant and to pass on the message to friends, family and neighbours.

Speaking yesterday (Tuesday), Sergeant Brown explained: Scammers are inventive and can be very convincing. Their singular aim is to gain access to your money and they will employ just about any tactic to do so, from claiming to represent businesses and government agencies or fundraising for charity.

Always be wary of any individual that calls you out of the blue and be especially suspicious of anyone who asks for money, banking or credit card information. It is highly unusual for any legitimate company or organisation to demand money over the phone.

"If you are at all suspicious about a call that you receive, hang up and phone the organisation that the person is purporting to represent to check their authenticity.

"Ideally make the call from another telephone so you can be sure the original caller has not remained on the line.

He added: Scammers will target people they perceive to be more vulnerable, such as older people. Take a few minutes today to speak to a grandparent, neighbour, or family friend about how they can avoid being the victim of a scam.

"Let them know it s not rude to hang up if they feel something is wrong and that no one should pressurise them into handing over bank details or personal information.

Police have advised anyone who may have received a call of this kind or are concerned by the intent of unsolicited calls, emails or letters then please report it to Action Fraud via their website www.actionfraud.police.uk or by phoning 0300 123 2040, or call police on the non-emergency number 101.

For details of current scams and how to avoid becoming victim of a scam go to the Scamwise NI internet site at www.nidirect.gov.uk/campaigns/scamwiseni

The local crime prevention officer is also available to offer advise by calling 101.

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