More than £28.7 million lost nationally to courier fraudsters in the last year

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Home Breaking More than £28.7 million lost nationally to courier fraudsters in the last year

More than £28.7 million lost nationally to courier fraudsters in the last year

Pensioners are being urged to be vigilant after data revealed that nationally more than £28.7 million was lost to courier fraud in the last year.

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

In Suffolk £987,589 was lost between April 2023 and March 2024 following 26 reports of courier fraud.

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

People in their 80s are most likely to be targeted by criminals carrying out courier fraud, with this age range accounting for 43 per cent of all victims, data from Action Fraud shows.

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

Courier fraud occurs when people are contacted by persons purporting to be police officers, or bank officials and duped into handing over money, valuables or bank cards, which are collected from their home address, often by couriers. The criminals use a variety of different tactics, often claiming that there is a problem with your account and they need your help to catch the real criminals.  

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

The victim may also be encouraged into handing over their bank cards and PINs, as well as high value items such as jewellery, watches and gold (coins or bullion). Victims can also be coerced into going out and buying items such as gold and jewellery from legitimate retailers on behalf of criminals.

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

Of reports made, 63 per cent of victims were female and 37 per cent were male, with an average loss per victim of £20,032. Comparative reporting data for 2022 and 2023 showed that there was a slight decline in total losses this year, of £85,976 (£28,772,067 vs £28,686,091).

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

Suffolk Constabulary Detective Sergeant Jamie Adams said: “With this crime disproportionally affecting the elderly and the vulnerable, this is a particularly distressing crime, with heartbreaking consequences.

More Than £28.7 Million Lost Nationally To Courier Fraudsters In The Last Year

“If you know of anyone that you feel might be susceptible to this, please help ensure they are aware of the dangers and consider measures such as call blocker.

“If you have any concerns or feel you or someone you know may have been targeted, please report it.

“Reports can be made to both the police and to Action Fraud, while further advice is available on the Action Fraud website.”

Detective Sergeant Victoria O’Keefe, from the Lead Force Operations Room at the City of London Police, said: “This is a particularly nasty crime type often resulting in significant psychological harm and financial loss to victims, many of whom are living alone and suffering age-related illness.

“Many elderly people rely on their landline phone to stay connected to the outside world and for peace of mind, we would recommend protecting loved ones from fraudulent calls by getting a call blocking device fitted.

“If you hear that your friend or loved one is being contacted out of the blue by the police or the bank and asked to withdraw money, handover bank cards or make purchases, report it to the police immediately.”

Call blockers filter unwanted scam and nuisance calls and stop them from getting through to the person’s landline. The devices allow calls through from a trusted caller list set by the user for friends, family members, doctors and any other trusted contacts. To find out more about call blockers, visit  www.truecall.co.uk.

Reporting and further information

Report it to Suffolk Constabulary via: www.suffolk.police.uk/contact-us/report-something/report-crime or 101

Report it to Action Fraud via: https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/report-a-fraud/how-to-report-a-fraud or call 0300 123 2040.

If you’ve given your bank details over the phone or handed your card to a courier, call your bank straight away to cancel the card.

For more details on courier fraud please visit: https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/a-z-of-fraud/courier-fraud

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