We’ve received the following message and would like to pass it on. It is also on the Essex Police website here.
Police have warned the public to be on their guard against a bogus police officer who attempts to use the non-emergency number 101 to steal bank details.
The man is known to call people at random and tell them their bank details have been found in possession of arrested suspects.
In an attempt to verify that he was a genuine officer he gave the name of Sgt James Hackett (no such officer exists) and invited his intended victim to call him back urgently, within five minutes, on the police 101 number.
One victim did call him back to find out more but became suspicious because there was no ring tone and no extension number was given. He hung up immediately. Another victim was tricked into giving details.
Tony Ellis, the crime reduction officer for Epping Forest District, said: “We are aware of two cases where this trickster tried to obtain his victim’s bank details. In one he succeeded. These calls can immediately be identified as fraudulent because we would never ask for bank details over the telephone.
This man might use many other aliases and try different stories but the single rule that will prevent you from becoming the victim of this type of con is very simple….under no circumstances whatsoever must you give your banking details to anyone asking for them particularly over the telephone. If you receive a call of this nature please note what the caller says. If you suspect the caller in any way, discontinue the conversation and call me on 101 extension 319383.”