Police have warned Yorkshire residents of potential new phone scams - including how to avoid them.
North Yorkshire Police "a spate of voicemail and phone scams affecting residents" have been reported recently.
The force listed eight tips on how to avoid the scams.
Be vigilant: a genuine organisation like a bank or HMRC will never call you out of the blue and tell you that you owe money
Ask questions: if you are in any doubt that the caller is a genuine organisation, hang up and ring back on the organisation’s listed contact number. If this is your bank you can find the contact number on a letter or other correspondence they may have sent you in the post.
Protect your information: never give out private information or personal details over the phone or via text or email.
Report it: if you think you have been a victim of fraud or you know who the fraudster is then you can call the police on 101. Otherwise, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or via Action Fraud’s online reporting tool https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/reporting-fraud-and-cyber-crime
It can also be worth reporting these types of fraud to the organisation that the caller is claiming to be from –e.g. HMRC
Don’t panic: fraudsters often get away with tricking people into paying them money by using the ‘fear’ factor. If you receive a call telling you that you owe money, don’t be afraid to ask questions and verify that they are who they say they are. It is highly unlikely an organisation will call you out of the blue to demand money.
Spread the word: let others know about any scams youv’e heard about and how they too can keep themselves safe.
Find out more about protecting yourself from fraud: https://northyorkshire.police.uk/staying-safe/fraud/stay-safe-fraud/