Cruel phone scammers are targeting the elderly in Kent

Phone scam

Kent Police is warning residents across the county to be aware of a phone scam targeting the elderly.

Fraudsters are reportedly calling homes claiming to be part of the HM Revenue and Customs Service, and threatening arrests for non-payment of tax.

Residents are told to pay immediately with iTunes vouchers.

A number of phone scam cases have been reported in the last four weeks and in some cases victims have lost thousands of pounds.

The scammers are believed to be calling from overseas and using spoofing technology to appear as a UK based phone number.

Detective Seargent Alec Wood of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “Fraudsters are deliberately and callously targeting the elderly and terrifying them with threats of arrests.

“This fraud works because the victims fear they may have actually accrued tax arrears and they simply wish the problem to go away.

“I would urge people to check their own tax directly with the tax office and confirm it from a known source.

“This fraud can be defeated by spreading knowledge of the fraud and encouraging people to take a few minutes to check, verify and seek another professional or informed opinion, before rushing to pay.

“In any event HMRC would not wish to be paid in vouchers.”

If you’re a victim of fraud or know someone who is please visit Action Fraud online or call 0300 123 2040.