Date published: 15th May 2020

Officers are urging residents to be vigilant following a number of telephone scams in the North Norfolk area.

An elderly couple living at an address in Binham received a telephone call on Monday 4 May, where the caller, who claimed to be a police officer from a Fraud Investigation Team coerced the victims into withdrawing £5,000 from their bank. The cash was later collected from the address by a courier. The couple were later encouraged to withdraw a further £7,000 on Wednesday 6 May. The same courier attended the address to collect the cash.

A second incident was reported when a male victim aged in his 80s and from Fakenham received a telephone call from a man also claiming to be a police officer. The caller told the victim that his bank details had been obtained by someone in London and that he should immediately call 999. The victim, who then believed he had been put through to the police, was told to withdraw a large quantity of money from the bank. The victim was told to keep his phone off the hook until he returned with the cash.

Courier fraud happens when a fraudster contacts a victim by telephone claiming to be a police officer, bank or from a government department, among other agencies. A number of techniques will then be adopted in order to convince the victim to hand over their bank details or cash, which may then be passed on to a courier.

Residents are reminded that neither your bank nor the police will ever ask you to withdraw money or purchase items.

Further advice includes:

  • Your bank or the police will never ask for your PIN, bank card or bank account details over the phone – never give these details to anybody.
  • Neither the police nor the banks will send a courier to collect money from you.
  • Always request Photo ID and if unsure call the police.
  • If you're asked to telephone a bank, then always do it on a different phone to the one you were contacted on.
  • Fraudsters will keep the line open and have been known to play ringtones, hold music and a recorded message down the phone so the victim believes they are making a call to a legitimate number. Ensure you can hear a dialling tone before calling police or use a friend or neighbour's telephone instead.
  • Never download any software suggested by caller.
  • Do not rush into complying to the scammers demands / requests.
  • Friends, family, carers and neighbours are asked to spread the word to ensure everyone is aware of this scam and what they should do.
  • If you have already given your bank details over the phone or handed your card details to a courier, call you bank straight away to cancel the card

Officers are urging members of the community to ensure they contact family and friends, particularly elderly relatives to ensure they are aware of these scams.

Police are keen to hear from anyone who may have received a similar type of telephone call or have any information about these incidents. Contact Norfolk Police on 101 quoting crime reference number 36/30104/20 or 36/29830/20.

Alternatively, Contact the independent charity Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111.

In an emergency always call 999.

For further advice, head to the Action Fraud website or call 0300 123 2040.

Last updated: 15th May 2020