Rise in courier fraud phone calls results in residents losing thousands


We have recently been made aware of a number of scams which have resulted in residents losing significant sums of money. The scam appears to involve a phone call being made to residents claiming to be from the police.

In some instances, residents were told their debit cards had been cloned or they had been the victim of fraud, and they were asked to provide their bank details over the phone.

During other calls, the victims were told a family member had been arrested, while others were told to visit cashpoints and draw out thousands of pounds or purchase expensive items to hand over to a ‘courier' who would collect the money from their home.

Here are some real examples of scam incidents within the past couple of weeks:

An 89 year old man from Roath withdrew £8,000 in cash to hand over to scammers, but luckily didn't follow through with it.

An 80 year old man from the Heath tried to withdraw £25,000, but his bank refused to release the funds because they suspected he was being targeted by a scam.

A 79 year old man from Whitchurch handed over cards and pin numbers to a scammer, posing as a courier.

A 75 year old lady from Grangetown withdrew £6500 and handed it over to a courier.

We want to protect our residents from any type of scam, so we have some information and advice which we hope will help:

Don't buy goods or services or give money to cold callers at the door.  If you are unsure - don't open your door.  Put up a "No Cold Calling" stickers 

Never disclose your personal details or security details, such as your PIN or full banking password. 

Don't assume an email, text or phone call is genuine. Be suspicious - don't reply - bin it, delete it or hang up. 

Don't be rushed - a genuine organisation won't mind waiting.  Don't make snap decisions.  Scammers can be very convincing and persistent.

Listen to your instincts - you know if something doesn't feel right.  Stay in control - don't panic and make a decision you'll regret.

Be wary of anyone asking for money who wouldn't normally or if the request is out of the blue.  Beware! Scammers pretend they are from official organisations like the tax office, your telephone provider and the Police. 

Too good to be true offers usually are:

You can only win a lottery or prize draw if you've entered in the first instance. 

Legal companies will never ask you for money to make a purchase or claim a prize. 

Contact your telephone provider to see if they can offer you some facilities to stop unwanted calls. 

If in doubt - talk it out.  Talk to someone you trust like a friend or neighbour and get a second opinion.  Think twice and ask advice from the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06. 

If you ever feel threatened or intimidated call the police.