Renfrewshire Community Police are increasing patrols due to reports of fraudsters impersonating Police Officers in Renfrewshire.

Detectives at Paisley Police office are looking to raise awareness in respect of a specific type of fraud involving the impersonation of Police Officers which took place in the Bridge of Weir area.

This sophisticated type of fraud involves fraudsters contacting you via telephone and pretending to be from banks or other financial institutions, before arriving at door impersonating Police Officers.

These fraudsters can be very convincing and have been known to fake Police ID. They will dupe you into releasing your financial information and defraud you of large sums of money.

It appears that the elderly and vulnerable are being targeted by these criminals.

Officers have asked members of the public to remain vigilant and if you receive such a call to hang up and contact your local Police office.

If the Police turn up at your door following such a call, then the chances are that they are not genuine.

You are advised to close the door and call the Police. The control room will verify if they are genuinely our officers.

Police Scotland have said that they would much rather deal with a false call made under genuine circumstances, than you becoming a victim.

Do not worry about calling the Police.

Police Scotland have a specialist team of CID officers carrying out enquires into what happened in Bridge of Weir.

Between October 2021 and January 2022, over 30 reports have been received from members of the public across the country who have either been visited or contacted by individuals claiming to be from Police Scotland.

Insp Damian Kane of Renfrewshire Community police said: “This is an utterly despicable crime by vile criminals with no shame or common decency whatsoever.

Unfortunately, there has been a recent spate of this shameful type of offence across Scotland and I would like to highlight this scam to everyone and urge them to be vigilant.”

Superintendent Hilary Sloan from Partnerships, Prevention and Community Wellbeing Division said: “While there are a number of ways police officers may look to contact you, please be mindful of this scam and always be suspicious of any unexpected contact.

“If you receive such a call, or visit, ask for the officer’s details and which department they work for. If the contact is by telephone, hang up and if possible use a different phone to contact the police service via 101, where you will speak to genuine members of Police Scotland and can request police officer verification.

“We began a national roll-out of new identification cards, which feature an up-to-date picture of the officer, along with other key information and various security enhancements that make them extremely difficult to replicate.
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This roll-out was started in October 2021 and all police officers should be able to provide this identification when carrying out legitimate police business.

“If you receive an email claiming to be from Police Scotland with a link to an external site to make a payment, this may also be fraudulent. Be aware of phishing scams and verify that any link provided is genuine. If you receive something claiming to be from us requesting any form of payment, contact us via 101 to investigate this matter before parting with your money.

“We are treating this ongoing scam with the utmost seriousness and have officers around the country pursuing various lines of inquiry.”

If you have any concerns you can contact Police Scotland via 101 with any information. Alternatively, an anonymous report can be made via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Look out for your friends, family and neighbours and share this information with your loved ones to raise awareness and prevent them from being targeted.