Warning to be vigilant after Hemel residents scammed by banking app fraud

Police are warning residents to be vigilant after more people scammed

Tuesday, 7th December 2021, 1:20 pm
Updated Tuesday, 7th December 2021, 1:22 pm

Hertfordshire Police is warning residents to be wary of a scam involving fake banking apps.

Around eight offences have been reported over the last three weeks in the Hemel Hempstead, Stevenage, Broxbourne and Hatfield areas.

Scammers have targeted individuals who were selling valuable phones, cameras and other items via online selling platforms.

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Police warn residents to be vigilant of banking app scam

The vendors were contacted about their items and when the scammer arrived, paid for items using a convincing banking app. The app mimicked apps from a number of banks and appeared to show the funds being transferred to the victim’s bank account.

Detective Sergeant Mark Fava, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Serious Fraud and Cyber Unit, said: “This scam is catching a lot of people out as the app is very convincing.

"The scammer asks the victim to enter their bank details into the app and then it appears to show the amount being debited from the buyer’s account.

"I would urge anyone selling an item to be sceptical about accepting payment via a banking app. Payment by cash, credit card or using Paypal for Business is a more secure way of making a sale.

“Please help us to raise awareness by talking about this with your friends and family, especially if they are vulnerable or elderly.”

If you believe that you are a victim of this scam please report online to Action Fraud or call 0300 123 2040. Visit www.herts.police.uk/protectyourmoney for advice on avoiding scams.

Alternatively, you can contact Hertfordshire Police online, or call 101. If a crime is in progress or someone’s life is in danger, call 999 immediately.