Prestonians warned after Internet fraudsters strike in the city

Posted on - 13th July, 2018 - 9:12pm | Author - | Posted in - Crime, Preston News
A laptop being subject to a phishing scam
A laptop being subject to a phishing scam

Internet scammers have defrauded homeowners in Lancashire out of more than £100,000.

Lancashire Police say there’s been a report in Preston of the scam, which sees victims called on their landline.

The scammers say they are calling from a respected Internet supplier and say there’s a problem with the router or their internet/email account has been hacked.

Police say the scammers then advise to ‘fix the problem’ a piece of software needs to be downloaded.

This software allows the hackers to access the victim’s computer and show the ‘evidence’ they are being hacked, before requesting they log into their internet banking.

The caller then clears bank accounts, claiming to be money from hackers.

Police say in some cases loans and credit cards have been applied for in the victim’s name.

DC Danielle Lilley of Lancashire Police said: “These types of scams are becoming increasingly sophisticated and can appear realistic but we’re urging people to be extra vigilant and suspicious of cold calls.

“Always question the caller’s intentions and never give out any personal information or grant access to your files or devices.”

As well as a report in Preston the fraudsters have been reported as calling people in Nelson, Blackpool and Blackburn.

Read more: Preston insurance fraud gang caught after complex police probe

Here’s the latest anti-fraud advice from Lancashire Police.

– Be suspicious of cold calls relating to a computer security system problem, even if the caller claims to represent a respected company.

– Never give out personal information, such as credit card or bank details to a cold caller

– Don’t type anything into a computer, install software, visit any websites or follow any other instruction unless you are confident that the call is genuine.

– Under no circumstances let the caller take control of your computer system. They can gain access to all your personal files and harvest information.

– Do not put log-in passwords into websites if someone else can see your screen.

– If the cursor on screen starts moving and you are not in control of it, immediately disconnect your device from the Wi-Fi and switch it off. End any landline calls you are on.

– Never attend your bank as a result of a cold call and transfer money to unknown persons.

If you think you have been a victim of fraud please contact police on 101 or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

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