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Coronavirus (COVID-19): the policing response and what you need to know

Alert over telephone fraudsters

Man on the phone with text it's OK to say no

We’re urging people to be on the alert to a telephone fraud in which scammers claim to be from banks’ own fraud teams.

Officers were called to a bank in Thornbury on Tuesday 15 September by staff concerned about a customer’s transaction.

It transpired the man had been contacted by fraudsters through a phone call to an elderly relative whose money he manages. The conman told him the accounts were compromised following an online purchase and that he needed to transfer the money to a new account with another bank.

The conman then told the man to go into his local branch to arrange a further transfer, claiming he would be watching on CCTV. The fraudster even said bank staff would tell him it was a scam but not to trust them.

Thankfully the bank staff realised something wasn’t right and called the police – but the victim had already transferred a significant amount of money from the accounts.

We want you to warn your vulnerable elderly relatives and friends about this type of scam.

These fraudsters can be very convincing but please don’t discuss your finances with anyone who calls you out of the blue, even if they say they’re a police officer or from your bank. Genuine callers will be happy to make an appointment for you to visit them at a branch or police station.

It’s important to remember that police and bank staff will never ask you to withdraw or transfer money or to hand over cash, your card or your PIN. If you get this sort of call should hang up immediately and report it, always allowing time for the line to clear before making another call.

There’s lots of information about fraudsters and scams on the Action Fraud website. If you think you have been defrauded you can report it by calling 0300 123 2050 or via Action Fraud’s online form

If you have any information about this incident please call 101, quoting reference 5220209507.