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Pensioner loses £5,000 in ‘card-clone’ fraud
6:30am Wednesday 14th May 2014 in News
A conman pretending to be police officer targeted ten people on the same day.
The fraudster claimed to be a PC Ian Baker as he contacted residents across Eastbourne and Crowborough on Monday and conned a 79-year-old out of £5,000.
The caller told the pensioner in Crowborough that he was ringing from Paddington Green police station in London and said the victim’s card had been cloned and they had arrested someone for it.
The conman then asked the victim to prepare £5,000 to put in a taxi which would later arrive, which the pensioner did.
The caller used a similar method with nine other people, saying he was a police officer.
He would tell them their card had been used to buy luxury goods and they needed to call their bank or give them their bank details.
None of the other people targeted gave any details and immediately called Sussex Police.
The calls were the latest in a number of similar attempted scams in Sussex this year.
Detective Sergeant Dave Tye said: "Thankfully nine people became suspicious of the caller and either asked for a number to call back on or ended the call.
“Unfortunately the man in Crowborough believed his card had been cloned and has handed over a large sum of money.
“It is good that many people are already aware of this scam and are taking our advice.
“We urge anyone hearing about this scam to pass the message on to any friends and relatives who may not be aware of this particular type of targeted fraud, to prevent any vulnerable friends or family members from becoming victims.
“Legitimate organisations would never ask for bank or card details over the phone and we urge people to stay vigilant and to never pass on these details.
“Similarly, the police will never ask for money to be placed in a taxi to be taken elsewhere.
“Anyone receiving such calls should wait at least 10 minutes for their line to clear and, if the opportunity arises, dial 1471 to obtain the caller's number.
“Once certain that the line is clear, use your phone, mobile or alternative line and phone Sussex Police on 101 to report your suspicions.”
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