Con-men target elderly people

POLICE have issued a fresh warning about a scam that is sweeping Sussex.

Fraudsters have been phoning elderly people and posing as police officers trying to trick them into handing over their bank account details or thousands of pounds in cash.

Sussex Police has received a series of reports about pensioners across the county being contacted by people claiming to work for other police forces and telling them they almost became the victim of bank fraud.

The gangs convince the victims to hang up the phone and call first the police control room to confirm what they are saying and then their bank.

What the victims do not know is that the fraudsters do not hang up the phone. Instead they pose as police officers and bank staff until they have the victim’s bank details.

A courier is then sent to the victim’s home to collect their bank card before they withdraw cash or the victim is asked to take out cash to give to the gang to keep safe.

There have been at least 20 attempts to trick vulnerable people out of money in the last week across Sussex.

In the latest two cases that detectives are aware of, an 81-year-old woman was convinced to take £10,000 out of her bank to give to men who said staff at the branch were working with fraudsters to steal from her.

Detective Inspector Rob Walker said: “These people are contacting residents who they believe to be vulnerable and trying to scare them into handing over bank details or cash. If someone turns up at your home who you are suspicious about call 999 immediately.”