Warning: Mobile Phone Scams

It’s come to our attention that many of our communities are experiencing an increased number of scams targeting unsuspecting mobile phone users. If you get a call from an unknown number, or a phone number that you don’t recognise, be on your guard.

Increasingly, scammers seem to know more and more about you, so when they’re on the other end of the phone they can be incredibly convincing.

Banks are particularly common to be impersonated, so there are a few golden rules to remember. First and foremost, give out as little information as possible to a caller until you are completely you that you’re talking to who you think you’re talking to. If in doubt – just hang up. Banks know about the scams, so no matter how rude you feel, protecting your identity is always more important.

Once you’ve hung up – use a DIFFERENT phone to call the bank (or company) they claim to be from. Using the same phone could mean the person at the other end hasn’t hung up, so even though you’ve redialled, you’re still talking to them. Sadly, it’s a trick which is being used more and more, and in the confusion of the moment it’s easy to fall for. If you don’t have another phone available, try to use a friend or neighbours phone instead – it’s important to report it in case a scammer has managed to get the information they need from you without you realising.

Finally, if you do only have a landline, get a mobile phone for emergency use. It doesn’t have to be anything really expensive like an iPhone, a pay as you go handset from Argos will cost as little as £10. It’s also important for your safety and the safety of your family at difficult times, for example if you break down on the motorway to seek help.