A NEW initiative committed to raising awareness of fraud in South Derbyshire has been launched.
Detectives from Derbyshire Police are teaming up with Derbyshire County Council in a bid to increase public knowledge and protect the communities from becoming a victim of fraud.
The drive will focus on offering top tips and advice to encourage the public to take action against fraudsters and give them the opportunity to hear from victims of the crime.
This comes after a spike in fraud related crimes in areas such as Repton, Willington and Melbourne.
Detective Inspector Rob King, head of the Derbyshire economic crime unit, said: “The National Fraud Authority estimates that the cost of fraud to the UK economy is a staggering £52 billion pounds per year and, while only a small part of that is accountable to Derbyshire, these numbers are very worrying.
“We aim to target this issue head on by predicting fraud offending trends in Derbyshire and increasing public knowledge of the crime to ultimately stop fraud.
“Just remember, if something sounds too good to be true then it probably is.”
One of the main issues is a scam where fraudsters con people to obtain their bank account details and debit cards.
On each occasion, the fraudster has called the victim and pretended to work for the bank they have an account with, telling the victim there has been fraudulent activity on their account.
They ask the victim for their PIN and then tell them a courier will be sent to their house to collect their debit cards.
They encourage the victim to ring their bank to clarify the call is genuine but do not hang up, leaving the phone line open.
When the victim believes they are dialling their bank, they are actually speaking to another fraudster on the same line.
Anyone who thinks that they might have been a victim of fraud are urged to call police on 101 or, alternatively, visit www.actionfraud.police.uk