Anti-fraud scheme stops £68k from being moved

Police say the scheme stops suspicious transactions.
Police say the scheme stops suspicious transactions.

Twelve suspicious transactions worth over £68,000 have been stopped from being processed in Fife in the past five months.

The fraud prevention scheme has been in place in Scotland since the start of March. It enables bank staff to contact police if they suspect a customer is in the process of being scammed, with an immediate blue light response sent to the branch.

The latest incident happened in Cupar, where staff at Nationwide raised the alarm on Wednesday, July 25, after becoming concerned when a man in his 80s tried to withdraw a four-figure sum of money for work carried out at his home in the town.

Officers were able to attend his home and a 21 year-old-man has been arrested and charged with a trading regulations offence. A report has been submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.

Detective Chief Inspector Scott Cunningham said: “Since March we have seen thousands of pounds retained in people’s bank accounts, safe from falling into the hands of bogus callers and rogue traders. The incidents in Fife have seen staff from branches of numerous different banks calling police to invoke the Protocol so we could attend and quickly deal with any concerns or criminality.

"Whilst an extremely effective tool in tackling doorstep crime, we don’t want to rely on this as many older and vulnerable people could still be conned into having shoddy, substandard work carried out at their property and then paying well over the odds for it.

“I’m calling on everyone in Fife to think about their friends, family, neighbours and indeed themselves to make sure they know what to look out for. The simplest thing to do if you get an unexpected caller at your door offering goods or services, is to politely decline their request or offer and call police.”

Anyone concerned about a possible rogue trader or bogus caller should contact police on 101, or dial 999 if a crime is in progress.