Arm against con artists using Youtube

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A second scam call mock-up has been posted online by police in an effort to raise awareness about the ongoing con.

Herts Police has posted two example recordings – based on some of the real calls taken by people in the county – on its Youtube channel in order to continue raising awareness about the series of scams – which led to five men being jailed yesterday.

Phone scam mock-up

Phone scam mock-up

In December, almost 70 incidents were reported in Herts, with two of the victims losing large sums of money to the fraudsters.

In January, there were more than 30 attempted scams in the county, with another two falling victim and people in Hemel Hempstead among those targeted.

In the cruel hoaxes, the caller claims to be a police officer investigating fraudulent activity and ask their victim for their pin and account numbers, before asking them to send their bank cards to them using a ‘courier’.

Det Insp Ben Wright said: “We have released two mock-up recordings of phone scams in an effort to show the public what methods the fraudsters will use to convince a person to part with their bank cards and money.

“The recordings are based on actual calls and reveal some of the tactics deployed by the callers, such as offering a reference number as part of their assurance that the call is genuine. They also demonstrate how anyone could be on the other side of the telephone line as it is often not possible to verify their identity.

“Although the recordings only last around four minutes, in reality these fraudsters can keep their victims on the line for a very prolonged amount of time, all the while plying them with fake reassurance. We hope this insight into how the offenders work will raise awareness about the scams, which continue to operate around the county.

“Positively most people do recognise the calls as a scam but the impact on even just one person is so devastating that it is important we keep this crime on people’s radars and ensure they know what to do should they get a call.”

Officers are assuring those in Herts that police would never ask for bank account details or pin numbers over the phone, and urge people to avoid disclosing these to anyone, no matter who they claim to be.

Police would also never ask you to withdraw money and send it to them or send any bank cards to them via a courier, taxi or by any other means.

If you are suspicious of the nature of a call, hang up and either wait five minutes or use a mobile or neighbour’s phone to redial police on the non-emergency number 101, to ensure you are not reconnected to the offender.

You can listen to the second mock recording above, or visit the Herts Police Youtube page for the first one at www.youtube.com/HertsPolice.