Police are warning Cheshire residents not to fall victim to phone fraudsters claiming to be from a bank or posing as police officers.
Cheshire Police are aware of several incidents in Lymm, Knutsford and Warrington relating offenders phoning elderly people and telling them their bank cards had been compromised and needed to be cancelled.
They advised the victim to hang up and ring the bank or police back to ensure the call is genuine. The offender stays on the line, sometimes passing the call to another person so the caller thinks they are genuine.
They then tell the victim that a courier will pick up the cards and that there will be a charge for this.
The cards are then picked up from the victim′s address and used by the offenders to steal money from their account.
PC James Read said: "Not only do they take money from your account; they charge you a fee for the privilege.
"Don′t be afraid to put the phone down on someone if you are unsure about handing over details.
"Banks never call and ask for your four-digit card Pin or ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them or transfer money to another account.
"Never assume a caller is genuine just because they hold some information about you. Criminals may already have some basic information, such as a name, address and account details to try to make the call appear legitimate.
"Always be wary of cold callers who suggest you hang up the phone and call them back.
"Remember that it takes two people to terminate a call so try and use a different phone line if you are asked to ring back. If you think you′ve already been a victim of this scam, contact your bank or card company immediately."