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Advice given after a ‘Ukash’ voucher scam

6/28/2012

 

Police are reissuing advice after a number of incidents in Dacorum where residents were the victims of a scam, which has already seen other victims in Hertfordshire conned.

 

In the latest incidents, one of the victims was conned out of thousands of pounds. Other incidents are known to have occurred in Royston, Cheshunt, Hoddesdon and Hatfield.

 

The victims, who are often elderly, are told that they are owed large sums of money through a PPI claim or a loan agreement. People are being told that their claim/loan is settled but in order to release the money they need to pay an admin fee, ordinarily by Ukash vouchers at local shops and Post Offices.

 

Ukash vouchers are usually used to buy goods online at vast number of online shops.

 

Six incidents have occurred in Dacorum since the beginning of April with people purchasing vouchers ranging from £58 to £2250. The victims have been aged between 21 and 80 years old.

 

After the victim buys the vouchers they are asked to call the scammers back to give them the voucher number and receipt number. The fraudsters then take down the Ukash voucher number on the phone and the victim never receives the money. The vouchers are most often used at international web sites where the funds cannot be traced.

 

As soon as the purchaser has these details it is as good as giving the scammer cash. 

 

Detective Inspector Justine Jenkins said: “We need to ensure people are aware of this scam to prevent any more people parting with their money. So far we have had six reports in Dacorum, however it is likely there are probably many more people out there who do not realise they have been scammed.

 

“It is often elderly people who are targeted because they tend to be more trusting. I would like to highlight this scam to people and ask them to make their elderly relatives and friends aware of this.

 

“I’d also ask anyone who receives a call of this nature or who believes they have been a victim, to contact police as soon as possible via the non-emergency number, 101.”

 

More information about Ukash Vouchers:

Ukash can be used online instead of a credit card using the voucher number.  These vouchers are available in stores which display signs such as epay, paypoint, payzone.  Each voucher is worth the amount of money it is purchased for, there are no extra fees. A Ukash voucher can be used in different ways; the voucher value can be spent online to buy goods and services on websites where Ukash is accepted.  Vouchers can also be used to load value into an e-wallet or prepaid card, including a personal Ukash NEO card, which allows the user to spend money wherever MasterCard is accepted.