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Warning over fraudsters' fake council phone calls

By Noel McAdam

Scammers are tricking people into giving them money by ringing homes while pretending to be from the local council.

The fraudsters use the caller ID of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council and demand cash.

The council has now launched a public appeal warning people against letting the conmen spoil the festive season.

The authority, which is made up of the former Carrickfergus, Larne and Ballymena councils, said it had been made aware of a number of incidents of suspected scam telephone callers working in the area.

A spokesperson said the council took all such incidents extremely seriously, and added: "We've been informed of a number of scam phone calls to members of the public locally.

"It seems the scammers are using our caller ID to mislead people that they are calling from our council number.

"We will never call to ask for money in any circumstances. If you are suspicious about a call, hang up right away and report the call to Action Fraud, on 0300 123 2040.

"Don't let these callers spoil your Christmas. Anyone receiving a call of this nature is advised to contact Action Fraud to report the incident. This can also be reported online at www.actionfraud.police.uk."

Action Fraud recommends that people always hang up the phone if they are suspicious about calls.

It also advises against entering into conversation.

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