People in Dyfed-Powys have been urged by the police to be vigilant and alert to cyber-crime following a spike in coronavirus scams.
This warning comes as Action Fraud UK last week announced an increase of 400 per cent in coronavirus-related frauds. Between February 1 and March 18, Action Fraud received 105 reports from victims of coronavirus-related frauds with loses totalling close to £970,000.
Action Fraud is the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting centre. They provide a central point of contact for information about fraud and financially motivated internet crime.
The majority of reports are related to online shopping scams where people have ordered protective face masks, hand sanitiser, and other products, which have never arrived. Other frauds being reported include ticket fraud, romance fraud, charity fraud and lender loan fraud.
There are also over 200 reports of coronavirus-themed phishing emails. These attempt to trick people into opening malicious attachments which could lead to fraudsters stealing people’s personal information, email logins and passwords, and banking details.
Police and Crime Commissioner Dafydd Llywelyn said: “Criminals may use the Coronavirus to trick you into handing over your money and personal information. They may offer to test you for the virus, provide a vaccine or ask for coronavirus charity donations.
“Don’t be tricked into giving fraudsters access to your personal or financial details over the phone, email or in person. Be careful of uninvited approaches such as these. Take five, think twice, think fraud”.
To report a fraud or get help and advice on fraud prevention, report it to Dyfed-Powys Police via 101 or visit Action Fraud online or Phone 0300 1232040.