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Woman Loses More Than £200,000 Through Telephone Scam

A Woman from Southwold in the UK has fallen victim to a sophisticated telephone scam and been duped into transferring over £200,000/$278,000 to a scammers bank account.

The woman who was in her 60’s had been contacted by scammers pretending to be from the fraud department of here bank. They informed her that there was a serious security issue with some staff at the bank and that she needed to urgently moved here money to another account specially set up for her. They were very convincing and played the long game taking three days to complete the scam.

The fraudsters used real telephone numbers associated with the woman’s bank in order to reduce suspicion and told her not to tell anyone about it. They said that she could either transfer the money via internet banking or go into her branch but that if visiting her branch she should not mention the phone call or anything else to do with what they had discussed as they still did not know who was involved in the security issue. They told her what she should say and not say to bank staff and friends and relatives.

These fraudulent callers will always sound very convincing. They will usually know just enough about banking procedures and you in order to make you feel at ease. They can also often mask the number that appears on your caller display so that it “appears” genuine.

Police have said the public should remember the following:

• Your bank or the police will never ask you to withdraw money or purchase items

• Your bank or the police will never ask for your PIN, bank card or bank account details over the phone – never give these details out

• If the victim has any concerns about what the caller is asking then they should end the call and report to their branch and or fraud department

• Never download any software suggested by caller

• Do not rush into complying to the scammers demands / requests. If you receive such a call leave the landline for at least five minutes to make an outside call. Fraudsters will keep the line open and have been known to play ring tones, hold music and a recorded message down the phone so the victim believes they are making a call to a legitimate number.

Friends, family, carers and neighbours are asked to spread the word to ensure everyone is aware of this scam and what they should do.

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