Warning after phone scammers pose as police and enforcement officers to con people in Thanet

Phone scam

Kent Police is reminding people to be alert to scammers following an attempted fraud in Broadstairs.

It was reported that yesterday (December 21)  a resident in Broadstairs received a call from a man claiming to be an officer from Norwich investigating money laundering. The victim was asked to go to their bank to withdraw £8,000 as the officer claimed they needed to check the notes were real.

The fraudster also arranged for a taxi to collect the money but the suspect left empty-handed after the bank intervened and declined the cash withdrawal.

Officers are making enquiries into the incident.

District Commander for Thanet, Chief Inspector Ian Swallow said: “Officers will never ask a person for money or for their bank details. It may sound convincing as they could know your name, address, or name a local taxi firm during the conversation, but if you receive one of these calls, end it immediately and wait at least ten minutes before using your telephone to ensure the scammer has cleared the line.

“Unfortunately those who are targeted are often the most vulnerable, such as elderly people or victims with learning difficulties. It is important people know how to spot the signs of a fraudulent phone call so their finances are not put at risk and I would encourage friends, neighbours and family members to help us protect those who may be particularly at risk from these types of scams.”

Second scammer incident

A Thanet businessman, who asked not to be named, says he was also targeted by fraudsters last night.

He said: “ I had a very “real” phone call from someone pretending to be a county court enforcement officer stating that enforcement agents would be attending my property within the hour and issuing a CCJ.

“This person had my personal details including, addresses, full name and date of birth. This was an old address where I may not have received communication/ letters. If you receive letters for anyone at your address please do try to pass them on. Fortunately my old business address the new tenants do so but at my old home address they did not and binned them in the past, this can cause a lot of people problems.

“The supposed debt was also from a company I have used for business advertising in the past. This company is closed until the new year but fortunately I had mobile numbers for some of their employees. Local Thanet and Kent business are being targeted by this person.

“I was requested to go through a stay of execution whereby he would give me the bank account details of the intermediary as the courts where closed at that time after 5pm.

“This is where I clocked it and wouldn’t make a payment over the phone. The scammers phone number was already reported on a website called www.whocalledme.co.uk and was 07584771779 so block this number if it calls you.

“I urge anyone who gets a call like this to hang up and make their own lines of enquiry. You must also report it to action fraud on 03001232040.”

Report it

To report a fraud you can contact Kent Police online or by calling 999 in an emergency. You can also contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111. You can also visit their websites.

16 Comments

  1. With reference to mail being forwarded from a past address, you can get Royal Mail to redirect your mail to your new address. This costs £36 for a year, but it’s well worth it for the peace of mind.

    I had a call from “O2” this morning. The number was a UK landlines number, but the person speaking had such a strong Asian accent that I had difficulty understanding what she was saying. Something about a 30% discount.
    She quoted the last 4 digits of my number, to give her call some authority. But of course she knew those numbers … she’d just dialled them!
    I wasn’t convinced at all, so I rang off.

  2. Use your brains-why would Norwich police be phoning somebody in Thanet, to get them to withdraw cash & hand it over to a courier? Not as stated that any police force would demand money, or be involving the public in criminal investigations.

    For the other one-you are only as safe as the security of the companies you use & we see even government departments & businesses still running Windows XP & leaving documents in skips when they move or go out of business.

    • GB News, “use your brains” they are preying on the vulnerable and elderly, so they may not be as switched on as you.

      • BBC even put shows on aimed at the elderly with these very scams on all year round-Scam Interceptors, For Love Or Money etc & have done for decades. ITV do them on the Tonight Show, This Morning & elsewhere. They get mentioned on here regularly.

    • Yep. You’d think that if the Norwich police wanted (for whatever reason) to check whether a Thanet bank was doling out forged notes, they’d just go to the bank and have a look in the tills.

      • I would think that Kent Police would be the ones doing the investigation at their behest & not Norfolk Police themselves. These scams literally fall apart if people take just 5-10 seconds to stop & think about what utter tripe they are being told.

  3. Yet another insulting comment by Peter Checksfield about Welsh people.I notice he never makes one about other Celtic nations.

    Perhaps he thinks he is not being racist but just having a bit of a laugh.

        • I didn’t call the Welsh “morons”. Only one of them, whom I suspect has never been anywhere near the place (all the Welsh peeps I know have a great sense of humour, and are warm and welcoming).

  4. Ooh! I’ve just received a text from “Royal Mail”.
    They’ve got a parcel for me that can’t be delivered because of “incomplete address details” (but they knew my phone number …)
    I reported it as a scam.

  5. I was interested to read the comments, as someone who has just moved after many years. I have put in place the Royal Mail redirection service. Unfortunately, the previous contributor didn’t get their information correct! It is not “£36 for a year”. The prices are, Three months £36, Six months £53 & Twelve months £76. I have gone with the twelve months at £76, which is still reasonable value.

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