Over £700k saved from scams in Thames Valley

Money

Published by Charlotte Fisher at 11:58am 10th August 2018.

Over £700,000 has been saved from scams in the Thames Valley thanks to a ground-breaking new scheme.

Local Banks, Police and Trading Standards have been working together to spot victims when they visit their local branch.

Earlier this year a man was conned out of £5,000 in Haddenham after a fraudster pretended to be a police officer.

The man managed to convince the victim to withdraw the money from his local bank - and this is exactly what this new scheme, Banking Protocol, has been stopping.

Branch staff, call handlers, police and trading standards officers have all been trained to identify victims like this. 

Since it was introduced by Thames Valley Police in February 2018, a total of 73 emergency calls have now been placed and responded to through the scheme.

£600,000 saved from fraudsters in Thames Valley

£707,000 stopped falling into the hands of criminals

Banking Protocol enables bank branch staff to contact police if they suspect a customer is in the process of being scammed, with an immediate priority response to the branch.

Across the country the Banking Protocol has now led to a total of 197 arrests and prevented almost £25 million in fraud, while 3,682 emergency calls have now been placed and responded to through the scheme.

As well as stopping fraud taking place, the scheme ensures a consistent response to potential victims and gives them extra support to prevent them becoming a victim in the future.

UK Finance has led the development and implementation of the Banking Protocol, with support from the National Trading Standards Scam team and the Joint Fraud Taskforce.

Detective Inspector Duncan Wynn, head of Thames Valley Polices Economic Crime Unit, said

"We aim to make the Thames Valley an area where serious and organised criminals are unable to conduct their business and target vulnerable individuals within our communities.

"The Banking Protocol is a fantastic example of our strong partnership working which protects victims, safeguards their finances and also ensures that criminals do not benefit from their crimes. £602,000 would have been a significant economic loss to those victims".

"In addition to this, the Banking Protocol means we identify vulnerable victims early and put measures in place to prevent them being a victim to further scams, so the loss prevented in the long term will actually be much more than the £602,000."

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