Gloucestershire Police are urging caution in how card details are given out over the phone upon the launch of Courier Fraud Awareness Day.
Courier fraud is a telephone scam which thousands of fall victim to each year. A scammer will telephone a victim pretending to be from their bank, the police or law enforcement agency and trick the victim into revealing their pin number and handing over their card to a courier or taxi driver.
It is a growing crime with over 2,500 offences reported to the Metropolitan Police last year, with scammers particularly targetting the elderly and vulnerable.
Successful scams are now reducing thanks to increased public awareness, but police are still warning people to be careful as criminals work harder than ever to defraud victims.
The crime is now evolving into other scams such as telling the victim their assistance is required in helping with a police investigation and in helping expose a corrupt bank clerk.
Detective Inspector Andy Dangerfield, of Gloucestershire Police Protective Service said: “Although we have been making strides in combating courier fraud in the county, with a number of convictions achieved, there have been some 20 cases in the last 12 months.
"It is vital people stay vigilant. Courier fraudsters are extremely persuasive, and put a huge amount of time and effort into being convincing because the pay-off is massive.
"We want people to challenge even genuine sounding calls and, most importantly, remember police and banks will never ask for your PIN or bank card, so you should never give these away.”