Renewed warning after ‘council’ scam callers reported

Lincolnshire County Council.
Lincolnshire County Council.
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More bogus calls purporting to be from district and county council’s has sparked a further warning for people across Lincolnshire to be vigilant against scammers.

Lincolnshire Trading Standards is renewing the appeal after putting it out last month (July), after more people have reported being called by the county council.

The Boston Standard received a message on its Facebook from one person who had received such a call and had contacted Lincolnshire County Council to check its validity.

They said: “People are calling landlines claiming to work on behalf of Lincolnshire county council stating they can help if you have has an accident. It seems a lot of people are.”

They received a reply from the council confirming they had been the target of a similar scam a few weeks ago.

They confirmed the scammers hadbeen able to link their calls through to the switchboard number so if anyone rang for conformation they got through to Lincolnshire County Council switchboard.

They said: “Our IT department is aware of the issue, and we have also contacted Trading Standards to inform them of this issue again.”

Boston Borough Council have also tweeted out a warning today (Wednesday) about the scammers and a spokesman told the council that members of staff at the authority had received calls.

However, they added the scammers had been given short shrift by those who called and told they were calling staff of the council - to which they immediately hung up.

In each case the caller claims that they are calling from the council about an accident that happened last year, sometimes suggesting that it may be possible to claim compensation.

Kirsty Toyne, principal trading standards officer at Lincolnshire Trading Standards warns people not to fall for the scam:

“If you receive a phone call like this one please just hang up. Lincolnshire County Council will never contact you in this way so you know it’s a bogus call.

“It’s not clear what the fraudsters will do with any information gained so please do not give out any of your personal information to them. Just put the phone down”

Other scams include telling people there has been illegal activity on their computers in order to access and lock them, demanding payment in return for access to their property.

People also purport to be from police, bank officials or a representative of HMRC - and some have even tried to convince people they are from charities.

If you have been affected by the scam, please contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or visit www.actionfraud.police.uk

You can find out the latest scam warnings by following @Lincsts or like Lincolnshire Trading Standards on Facebook.