POLICE are urging members of the public not to be fooled by a recent spate of telephone fraud scams.

Officers are investigating several reports of residents being contacted by fraudsters claiming to be from their bank, saying money has gone missing from their account and that it is likely to be staff from their local branch.

The caller instructs the victim to go to their bank and make up a story as to why they are transferring their money to another account and not to tell anyone else as they cannot be trusted.

The money is then transferred to an account number that is given to them and then lost.

PC Alex Keay, of West Mercia Police, said: "The fraudsters are clever and convincing and appear to be targeting the landline telephone numbers of elderly people.

"In some cases the money that they have conned out of victims are very high amounts."

Police are advising people who receive a phone call from someone claiming to be their bank to:

  • Never pass any bank details over the phone. Banks will contact via letter.
  • If the bank asks what the money is for, be honest with them. Bank staff have vigorous security checks in order to handle accounts.
  • Always speak with family members about calls of a similar nature.
  • Consider changing your number if you receive several call of this nature.
  • If it doesn't feel right, seek advice.

Suspicious calls can be reported to police on 101, or to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

A police spokesman added: "Please pass this information on to elderly relatives and friends and make them aware."