Dedicated teams from Northumbria Police are continuing the fight against those targeting vulnerable people in order to scam and strip them of their savings.
Officers are teaming up with Barclays Bank to host a crime prevention event where members of the public can come and ask questions about banking and keeping their savings safe from fraudsters.
The prevention event will take place on Thursday February 6 at The Forum, Wallsend and will run from 10am until 2pm.
Officers and staff will be on hand to engage with members of the public and give crime prevention advice as well as demonstrate how banks can help keep them safe too.
Neighbourhood Sergeant Kathryn Tailford, from Northumbria Police, said: “We need to do all we can to protect victims from these types of crime. We continue to put suspects before the courts but there are also opportunities for us to engage with the public and educate them on staying safe and warning signs to look out for.”
Some of the most common offences can relate to automated scams such as banking, investment and computer services where offenders deceive victims into transferring money into a fake account or paying ‘admin fees’ to then be sent a larger sum of money.
Banks will not ask for account information over the phone and if you are ever unsure then hang up or log off and contact your local bank branch for guidance who can then contact police if it is proven to be fraudulent.
Sgt Tailford added: “These types of crimes are often committed by selfish greedy criminals with no remorse for stripping vulnerable victims of their life savings.
“We need to act quickly and get ahead of those targeting victims as the financial loss is devastating and can have life-long emotional trauma attached as well as the damaging financial impact.
“The old saying stands, if something looks too good to be true, it probably is. So speak to a friend or someone you trust and seek advice before handing over any money.
“Try searching a company name or phone number online to see if it is genuine and don’t be afraid to hang up – any legitimate bank will be fine with you checking them out before calling back or dropping into your nearest branch.
“We encourage anyone who has been a victim to report it to police. We know it can often be embarrassing but these scams can be very convincing and appear legitimate to even the most perceptive of people.
“By reporting it you can help us protect others and stop offenders before they strike again.”
Stop by the event and speak to officers or staff member or if you have any concerns, or think you might have been a victim of fraud, please visit https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/
Alternatively, you can seek advice from us by visiting: https://www.getsafeonline.org/northumbria/