Could you spot a potential scam?

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WHAT do you do when your phone rings and ‘Unknown Caller’ flashes up?

Do you take the chance and answer it or do you let the answerphone pick it up safe in the knowledge that if it’s important they will leave a message?

‘Unknown’ or ‘withheld’ numbers can come from a variety of sources. For some it is those who have chosen to go ex-directory or purposely not share their number.

But nine times out of 10, in my experience, it is a cold caller or a scam.

Not wanting to tempt fate but I am fortunate that I have never been the victim of bank fraud and I would hope that if someone called trying to obtain my personal details I would be able to spot a scam call.

And according to statistics 82 per cent of people across the city also feel confident they would clock on to a fraudster.

However, a worrying 84 per cent of city residents felt that anyone could be a potential victim of fraud.

The latest scam involves a person being called by someone claiming to be from their bank telling them they have been the victim of fraud.

They then suggest the victim hangs up and calls their bank back to make sure the call is genuine. However, they hold on the line and ‘answer’ the call.

They are then told that their card needs to be picked up and they need to key their pin number into the phone.

A courier then picks up the card to take it to the ‘bank’ before actually taking it to the fraudster. Often the courier won’t even know they are part of a scam.

Sorry? Back up a minute...

If someone called me from my bank I would surely ask them to confirm some personal details to me rather than the other way around.

Secondly, if you call the bank back on a landline surely you would notice the lack of a dial tone or the fact the phone didn’t ring.

Thirdly, banks never ask to come and collect your card. Also your bank will never ask you to enter your pin into the phone or say it out loud.

If you’re standing at the cashpoint and someone said to you, ‘Hey mate, I’m from your bank I need your card and pin number’ you wouldn’t give it to them, would you?

So why give it to someone knocking on your door?

The problem is that older people can often be more trusting and the survey revealed that 93 per cent of people fear that older people could be in danger.

If you have friends or family who may be vulnerable then make sure they are protected, because they may be the ones who are targeted.

In the meantime if you get a call from your bank telling you that you have been the victim of fraud then make sure that they are genuine.

There must be a million and one ways you can confirm they are the real deal.

You are asked to enter personal questions and details for a reason.