Fraud alert: Scam texts sent from family members received by Derbyshire residents
Officers are alerting people to scam texts being sent that are trying to trick people into sending money to them.
The force had a report earlier today from a woman who had received a text from an unknown number saying it was her daughter.
The text explained that she had damaged her phone and that she needed to get in touch with her on a different number. The scam then tells the victim that they are unable to pay a bill and that they need money sending to them.
Fortunately, on this occasion the intended victim, who lives in the north-east of the county, did not send any money to the scammers.
If you get a text of this type do not respond. Use a different form of contact with the person that is apparently attempting to contact you and always speak to them directly via a call.
Should you receive a text of this type please report it to your local police force using any of the non-emergency contact points.
If you live in Derbyshire you can do this by contacting:
- Facebook – send us a private message to our Facebook page
- Twitter – direct message our contact centre via @DerPolContact
- Website – We have several crime reporting tools on our website or use our online contact form
- Phone – call us on 101
Scam police calls reported in Derbyshire
We are urging you to stay vigilant against scammers pretending to be police officers, following recent phone calls made to people in Derbyshire.
The calls, which took place in the Mickleover and Allestree area, involved a call out of the blue falsely claiming to be Derbyshire police officers called Officer Wilcox and PC Anderton.
The scammer claimed there had been suspicious bank activity from the potential victims and asked to meet them near a local police station.
Scams like these will rely on the victim cooperating by giving details, bank cards or cash to the ‘officer’ or a courier.
Fortunately, in each of these cases details were not provided and the victim called us to confirm whether the officer was legitimate before providing any details or attending the meeting.
Detective Sergeant Emily Kershaw said: “If you receive a call out of the blue, always remain cautious and to remember to stop, think and tell.
“As officers, we will never ask for personal or financial details like bank card numbers or account codes, and police or banks will never need to collect your bank cards to investigate fraud. We would always recommend contacting us via non-emergency means to verify that an officer and their enquiries are genuine.”
DS Kershaw added, “Please also make sure you share this message with friends and family, in particular with any older or potentially vulnerable relatives and neighbours, to ensure they know how to best protect themselves from these types of schemes.”
We’re currently raising awareness of this type of crime with our ‘Sock It To The Scammers’ campaign, featuring a pink sock puppet named Claude.
If you haven’t yet seen Claude, you can watch the video below, or find out more about our campaign here: Pink puppet pops up with fraud tips to help ‘Sock It To The Scammers’ | Derbyshire Constabulary
To avoid becoming a victim of a police impersonation scam, remember:
Police will never call out of the blue, request secure lines or personal information. They’ll never ask you to transfer money to another account, hand over cash or bank cards to a courier, or a pay a fine or fee over the phone. If someone asks you to do this, it’s a scam.
If an officer contacts you in person, they will show you their warrant card. This is proof of their identify and authority.
If someone has called you and you are unsure if they are a genuine police officer, you can hang up and call police on 101 to check their identity.
It’s recommended you wait at least five minutes and make sure you can hear a dialling tone before you call, as there have been cases of fraudsters keeping the line open after a victim has hung up.
You can find further information on how to check an officer’s identify here: How to check an officer’s identity | Derbyshire Constabulary.
If you think you’ve been approached or contacted by a scammer, you can report it by contacting us on the details below, or to Action Fraud, the national reporting centre, online at www.actionfraud.police.uk or on 0300 123 2040:
Facebook – send us private message to the Derbyshire Constabulary Facebook page
Phone – call us on 101
You can also anonymously contact the independent charity CrimeStoppers, on 0800 555 111, or by visiting the CrimeStoppers website.