VULNERABLE people across East Staffordshire are being reminded to remain vigilant and not be taken in by bogus scams.
The borough’s Citizens Advice Bureau has warned that people struggling to make ends meet are often the ones targeted by con artists. They said that only a few weeks ago, a woman named Lucy was approached by scammers who told her she had won €37,000 Euros in a lottery.
In order to claim the prize they asked her to send £150 immediately to ensure the money would be in her account within 24 hours.
CAB chief executive Dawn Green (pictured) said scammers were increasingly likely to target those that are most vulnerable, and is warning those who are approached to remain cautious.
She said: “While many of us might think we can spot a scam a mile off, others who are more isolated or have not been given any information about potential scams could fall victim and potentially lose hundreds of pounds.”
On a national level, the CAB found that fraud offences in England and Wales rose by 25 per cent in 2013, with 207,252 cases reported to Action Fraud.
New analysis reveals more than a third of scams take place over the phone, while almost a quarter were through website visits.
Ten per cent of scams occurred via email.
Mrs Green added: “Scams come in all shapes and sizes – phoney offers of work or training and bogus websites ripping people off.
“People who are already struggling to put food on the table, let alone save money day to day, are being fleeced of their hard-earned cash.
“It is disgraceful that scammers are often targeting elderly people with sophisticated scams such as posing as their bank or phone company.”