Belfast Telegraph

Police warning after Northern Ireland scammers £40k con

Chief Superintendent Simon Walls
Chief Superintendent Simon Walls

Police have urged the public to be vigilant after more than £40,000 was scammed from four people in Northern Ireland in the past week.

The first scam happened on May 18, when a man from Dungannon was conned out of £6,200.

Following a legitimate call for online support, he received another call from someone claiming to be from the same organisation, who was able to withdraw the money from his account.

Then on May 20, a Magherafelt woman was contacted by someone claiming to be from her telecoms provider, stating her computer was infected with a virus.

She was instructed switch on her computer and the fraudsters were able to remotely access it.

Following an ordeal that lasted over two hours, the victim was pressured to transfer £20,000 from her bank account to one controlled by the scammers.

On the same day, a business in Lisburn was targeted by online scammers who were able to remove £12,500 from the company account and transfer it to an account in England.

Police said they are working with Lancashire Police in the investigation.

The fourth incident happened on May 21, when a man from the Larne area responded an advertisement offering investment opportunities.

Scammers offered significant profits in return for a small deposit. Several requests for money followed and in the end the man lost a total of £2,700.

Chief Superintendent Simon Walls said each incident was an "awful ordeal" for each of those involved.

“Fraudsters will go to any length to scam people out of money and you might think it might never happen to you, but it can.  Each scam differs in design, but the ultimate aim remains the same – to steal your money," he said.

“Guarding your personal and banking details is essential. Never disclose them to any unauthorised person or allow anyone access to them via your computer.

“Financial institutions, utility companies, law enforcement, HMRC, internet and telecoms providers will never ask you to transfer money because your account is compromised or call out of the blue and ask for remote access to your computer or to download software."

Police urged anyone was has received a suspicious communication to report it to Action Fraud via their website or by phoning 0300 123 2040, or police on the non-emergency number 101.

Belfast Telegraph Digital


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