POLICE have urged people to be on their guard against scam callers as complaints increase about the problem.
Northumbria Police and Northumberland Trading Standards are concerned that such calls are on the rise across the county, with people reporting various tactics to try to get them to disclose their bank details or other personal information.
Some of the scams try to tempt them with winning large amounts of money, others suggest refunds are due for overpayment of Government grants.
A number of elderly and vulnerable people have received calls and in some cases the callers have become aggressive, even threatening their victims with visits from police if they do not disclose their details.
Business and Consumer Protection Manager Jimmy Power said: “Consumers are particularly vulnerable to hard sell tactics in their homes. We advise all consumers, particularly the elderly, to be wary and don’t be pressured or tricked into providing your bank details.”
To guard against the problem people are urged to be wary of unsolicited callers suggesting or implying that they are due money, not be pressured into giving personal details, avoid taking unsolicited calls when busy, not agree to anything just to get rid of a persistent caller and to terminate the call if they are not sure who they are speaking to.
Council Executive Member for Health and Public Protection Anita Romer said: “It is all too common for vulnerable members of the community to receive these scam calls.
“We’d urge householders to be on their guard and warn their elderly relatives and neighbours.”
Anyone who has received such a call can report it to Consumer Direct on 08454 040506, or Action Fraud on 0300 123 5040.