The Amazon scam targeting people in Gloucestershire

The scammers are pretending to work for internet giant Amazon. Credit: PA images

Police in Gloucestershire are warning people to be extra vigilant as scammers claiming to be from Amazon are targeting members of the community.

The fraudsters are phoning people and pretending to be from the company in order to get access to their computers.

One incident, on Thursday 26 November, almost saw one victim lose £90,000 to the criminals after they were bombarded with phone calls.

The scammers have been claiming the person's account has been hacked and they must download a specific type of software to protect themselves.

The 'software download' then gives the caller remote access to the victim's computer and allows them to get their personal and financial details.

By asking victims to download a piece of software, the scammer is getting access to their computers. Credit: PA images

Gloucestershire Police says it has received numerous reports of this scam from around the county.

Detective Sergeant Simon Shaw said: “Telephone fraudsters will try to panic and frighten you into following their instructions. There is usually a threatened consequence such as having your internet service terminated, or getting into trouble with the authorities.

“No legitimate company or agency would ever want to remote-access your computer, ask you to transfer money into a “safe” bank account, or instruct you to pay for something with e-vouchers or a money service bureau.

“If you’ve received an unexpected phone call, text message, or email, don’t respond or comply with the demand. Instead, take five minutes to think about whether an organisation would really contact you in this way.

“Please also share this advice with anyone whom you think may be vulnerable to this type of fraud.”

Do you suspect you're being targeted by a scammer?

  • Hang up the phone - use a different one to call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or call the police on 101

  • If you don't have access to a different phone, wait for a period of time and call a family member or friend to make sure the scammer is no longer on the line

  • Always question suspicious phone calls and report them

  • Always have a pad and pen next to the phone and take details if you get a suspicious phone call - take names, addresses and numbers - then contact the police to verify the information