Vulnerable Victim Offences- Awareness

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

There is considerable concern about the number of elderly people being targeted by fraudsters/tricksters in Ponders End and Enfield wide. An electronic flyer giving basic crime prevention advice and the do’s and don’ts is being produced.  Whilst this is being completed you may find the following information useful:

1) ATM DISTRACTION THEFT:

Customers are being distracted while using cash machines normally by Suspect 1 engaging them in conversation saying something about the machine being faulty and Suspect 2 noting the pin number. Suspect 1 uses a piece of paper to part cover the machine while pressing the reject button and taking the card. The customer thinks the machine has swallowed the card and goes inside the bank/ supermarket to report it. The suspects then use the card and pin number to withdraw the money straight away, normally at the same machine.

Please be mindful of your surroundings when using cash machines, stop using the machine if something doesn’t feel right, take your card out and call the police straight away. You should also notify their bank of the incident in case you have been defrauded.

2) ARTIFICE BURGLARY:

A suspect (often a female)  knocks on a victims door and asks for some money, giving a vaguely plausible reason such as ” To pay for a train ticket as I’ve lost my card”, “My baby is ill I need to get a taxi to the hospital”. The suspect sometimes mentions the victim by name or a neighbours name, probably from having read their mail or from sorting through their rubbish. Often the suspect invites themselves in to the house or is invited in by the victim with the suspect asking for a drink or to use the toilet. The suspect then uses this opportunity to take money/ valuables from within the home. This is often repeated on the same victim by the same suspect.

Ensure that you use your security chain/ spy hole when answering the door and do not open it if you feel uneasy. Never allow a stranger into your home and that includes someone saying they are a police officer. All police officers, including those in uniform, carry a warrant card which they are obliged to show on request. Do not give strangers money regardless of the reason that they give. Any concerns then close the door and call police straight away.

3) TELEPHONE FRAUD:

A victim receives a phone call from someone either purporting to be from their bank or from the police saying their card/ account has been used fraudulently. In order to verify that they are speaking with the customer the caller will ask for their date of birth and/or pin number to be inputted into the phone. Once done they then say they are sending a courier round to collect the bank card so they can investigate the matter. A courier comes round, takes the card then uses the pin number/dob given to withdraw cash/ commit fraud.

Do not to input your pin number into a phone or give it out to anyone. Neither the bank or the police will ever ask for the pin number. If unsure then ask for a reference number and put the phone down. Then use ANOTHER phone to call the bank, checking there is a dialling tone. Do not use the number given by the caller, use a number from your bank statement or from the internet. This will prevent you, the victim, from dialling a fictitious number that goes back to the fraudster or the fraudster keeping the line open by not putting down their handset.

Neither the bank or the police will ever come to your address to collect your bank cards or request your pin number or date of birth.

If in anyway suspicious then call the police straight away. You should also notify your bank of the incident in case you have been defrauded

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