Chief Insp Paul Winter’s guest column: Beware of bank fraud scammer

It is always concerning to receive reports of fraud and misrepresentation but we have been particularly alarmed by a spate of incidents in the last few days.

By News Reporter
Saturday, 22nd March 2014, 9:32 am

Half a dozen of the most vulnerable members of our community, including an 84-year-old from Forest Town, have been targeted in a sophisticated scam.

A caller purports to be calling from Nottinghamshire Police investigating bank fraud and asks to clarify bank details. He then advises the resident to call their bank but doesn’t hang up the phone so the resident speaks to them for a second time, believing them to be the bank.

On occasions victims have been encouraged to stay on the phone while a courier from the bank comes to collect their card. Cash is then taken from the account using the details the resident has given over the phone.

While this is a national trend thieves seem to be targeting addresses in Mansfield and we have seen six similar reports in the county.

I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to be wise to this sort of scam. Please ensure you inform all your neighbours, friends and relatives – especially those who are older, those who might not have seen the warnings on our website, and those who may be more vulnerable.

Remember never to give out PIN numbers or personal information over the phone. Banks will not ask for this information, and unscrupulous criminals just want to take advantage however they can.

If you receive an unsolicited call from a bank and you are unsure whether they are genuine don’t be persuaded into speaking to them. You can always say it isn’t convenient and visit your branch in person.

In other news you can expect to see a few new faces on the Mansfield and Ashfield beats next month.

From April 1 there will be eight new Police Officers along with several PCSOs joining the beat teams. They are completing their training at the moment to ensure they will be ready to hit the streets in a few weeks.

It takes me back to when I started out on the beat myself, back in 1992. I was first posted to Oxclose Lane Police Station, an area near to where I had grown up. I even had to arrest someone I went to school with on one of my first shifts!

I remember how excited I was to be putting all that training into practice and doing the job that I signed up to do.

We’ll issue some pictures and information about our new recruits in the coming days so keep an eye out on our website.