Age Cymru is today lifting the lid on scam letters.
We’re publishing a scam letter on our website that a member of our staff received recently offering him a share of a multi-million pound fortune.
Louise Hughes, our Safeguarding Programme Manager says:
“This is a textbook scam letter – the type that criminals use to steal bank details from unsuspecting members of the public.
“It follows a basic formula that is used in many scam letters and emails.
“If you can learn this simple pattern it will help you to protect yourself from being taken in by any scam letters or emails that you may receive in future.“
The basic scam letter pattern:
• The scammers tell you that you are being invited to take part in a sensitive business proposition that you should not discuss with anyone – this is to stop you telling anyone else about the letter in case they talk you out of it;
• You are being offered a share of a very large sum of money – the offer of a life-changing sum of money is another way to entice you into taking the bait;
• There is a very elaborate (and far-fetched) background story to explain why someone from the other side of the world is contacting you ‘out of the blue’, to offer you a large sum of money – this really is too good to be true, isn’t it?;
Louise Hughes comments:
“Scam letters can have a devastating effect.
“They are used by criminals to find trusting individuals who they dupe over a period of time into handing over their bank details.
“The criminals will then use this information to clear out those people’s bank accounts and leave them penniless.
“If you get a scam letter – either in the post or in your emails, ignore it – tear it up and put it in the bin, or delete it – never ever be tempted to respond to it.
“If you respond to a scam letter, you be put on a suckers’ list and you’ll be inundated with more junk and scam mail – all offering you the of a non-existent ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity.”
Age Cymru has teamed up with electricity distribution company WPD to provide handy fact-packed door hangers which give valuable advice and guidance to help older people keep crooks at bay.
These are available from Age Cymru offices and shops and Wilkinson stores across Wales.