A new phone call scam appears to be coming from local garda stations
Garda station phone numbers in County Kildare are being used by fraudsters to try and con people.
The number of Newbridge Garda Station, in particular - 045 431212 - is being used by con artists seeking personal data belonging to unsuspecting members of the public.
Kildare Garda Division has issued advice to members of the public to be on the alert for these incidents.
Gardaí have said that there are 'several stages' to these elaborate hoax calls.
The person receiving the call gets a pre-recorded or automated message that prompts them to select an option. The caller is then put through to another person alleging to be a member of An Garda Siochána.
The scammer either looks for personal information or informs the person that their details have been involved or linked to a crime.
After giving over personal details the victim receives a follow up call from another scammer seeking more details on behalf of An Garda Síochána. This call appears to be coming from a genuine Garda station number.
The garda division warned that An Garda Síochána will never make contact with members of the public in this fashion. "Most members of the public realise these type of calls are not legitimate and do not engage with the scammers. However, An Garda Síochána appreciates that a section of society may have very little to no previous interaction with An Garda Síochána and may be more susceptible to this type of fraud."
Gardaí are advising those receiving scam calls to not engage with the callers; to not return the call to not follow the automated instructions - do not press 1 etc; to never transfer money; to never disclose personal or financial information, and to hang up and end the call.
"Whilst the scammers may change their stories and methods, their goal is always the same – they want to access your sensitive information and get their hands on your money. Gardaí are urging the public to spread the word of fraud prevention as people continue to fall victim to scams on a daily basis. In many cases the subsequent call from the fraudsters appears to provide reassurance to the victim that this is a legitimate call, which it is not.
"If you believe you may have fallen victim to this scam, contact your financial institution and report the matter to your local Garda station."
On Twitter, several members of the public have complained about getting scam calls purportedly from Newbridge Garda Station in recent days.
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