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Armagh woman duped out of £500 in phone scam

An Armagh woman was duped out of £500 in cash by a cold caller scam.
And the incident prompted a police warning tonight (Monday) for others not to be taken in.
Police are advising residents in Armagh to continue to be cautious when dealing with unsolicited letters, texts, calls or emails offering loans or to release money, refund fees, pay lottery wins, or give away holidays and prizes. 
The advice follows an incident where a local woman paid £500 in Ukash vouchers.
She was contacted by a man calling himself Sam Lawson, phoning from telephone  number 0161 4081421.
He claimed to be from the Bank of Ireland and said the woman had been mis-sold PPI insurance and that they would issue a cheque for £1975 after she purchased Ukash vouchers for £500 and passed the voucher numbers on to the caller.
The victim of the scam did pass the voucher numbers on but did not receive any cheque.
A PSNI spokesperson said: “People are reminded that scammers are inventive and can be very convincing, however each scam has just one purpose – to tempt you into dropping your guard.
“Always be especially wary of any company or individual that asks for money up front. It is highly unusual for any legitimate  company or organisation to demand a fee in order to release a prize.
“Stop  and think – if you haven’t recently challenged your bills or bank fees then why expect an offer of a refund? If you haven’t entered a competition for a holiday or if you haven’t entered a foreign lottery, then how would it be possible for you to have won a prize?
“If you haven’t inquired about PPI payments or personal injury compensation, then why would someone be offering to pay it? 
“Guarding your personal and banking details is essential as well. Never disclose them to any unauthorised person. Your bank will never contact you asking for account numbers, passwords or PINs.
“If you have received a contact of this kind or are concerned by the intent of unsolicited calls, emails or letters then please report it to police on the non-emergency telephone 0845 600 8000.”

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