Residents are being advised to be on their guard against criminals and scammers who pretend to be their bank.
The warning comes as part of Scams Awareness Fortnight, launching on 14 June 2021.
Oxfordshire County Council’s trading standards team has received recent reports of scams targeting people using emails, text messages, and social media, pretending to be their bank or HMRC, inviting them to join investment schemes or ‘verify’ their information.
It is thought that scammers are taking advantage of financial measures put in place during the pandemic, such as furlough.
What to look out for
Trading standards says residents should be aware that deception crimes come in all shapes and sizes, from door knocking to phone calls, mail and online.
Residents should be wary of adverts offering fake ‘get rich quick’ schemes. Phone calls, texts or emails pretending to be from a bank, asking to move money or to provide personal details, or claiming that an account has been compromised and also texts asking to ‘verify’ personal details.
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Some scammers will claim to be be from official organisations, such as DVLA or TV Licensing or claim an extra parcel delivery payment is required.
How to avoid being scammed
To avoid getting scammed remember you can take time to respond; do not be rushed into making a decision. Be cautious. Do not be afraid to hang up, bin it, delete it, or shut the door.
Ask for ID if you are suspicious of someone asking for money up front.
Check with family and friends before accepting offers of help, if unsure.
Protect financial information, especially from strangers and never give bank card or PIN details to a stranger. Be cautious of investment opportunities, particularly if they seem too good to be true and seek professional advice before making any decisions.
If you think you have been scammed, report it to Action Fraud: 0300 123 2040.
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