Warning of council tax scam in Fife

Fifers are being warned not to give out their bank details over the phone.
Fifers are being warned not to give out their bank details over the phone.

Households are being warned to be alert for scammers claiming to be chasing council tax arrears.

A number of incidents have been reported over the last week, generally involving scammers calling or texting residents and asking for bank details.

Les Robertson, Fife Council service manager, said Police Scotland had was aware of the issue.

He said: “We do regularly call and text people about their council tax to encourage payment. But we will never ask people for their bank details. A genuine call from the council tax team will transfer people to an automated payment system if they are opting to make a payment.

“Our advice is to never pass your bank details on to anyone who calls you.

“If you are in any doubt about the call, hang up, wait a few minutes and check the caller has hung up – you should hear a dialling tone –then call us back on 03451 55 11 55, or use a different phone.”

Dawn Adamson, Fife Council’s lead trading standards officer said consumers lose around £9 billion to scams each year.

Trading standards advice on scams includes: Say no to unwanted callers; offers that sound too good to be true probably are; be wise to postal scams – no legal company will ask for money to claim a prize; keep personal details safe as they could be used fraudulently in the wrong hands; always check who you are communicating with online; and report scams to the Citizens Consumer Advice helpline on 03454 04 05 06 or Action Fraud on 0300 123 20 40.