Gardai issue warning over 'vishing' phone scam that has extracted huge sums from Irish people

NewsBy Sunday World
Gardai are asking people to spread the word about the scam
Gardai are asking people to spread the word about the scam

Gardaí are issuing a further warning regarding a telephone scam know as ‘Vishing’.

For the second time in a little over a month Gardai have issued a warning about a phone scam known as 'vishing'.

It involves an unsuspecting person receieving a call from a person who claims to be a well-known shop's 'security manager' and then that person asks you for various personal financial details.

If you refuse they ask you to call your bank or the gardai, sometimes even giving you the name of a local Superintendent to call.

However, when you hang up to call the bank or Gardai, the original call doesn't terminate and you end up giving the scammer your details.

Gardaí have received a significant increase in reports of this nature from all over the country and victims continue to lose substantial sums of money since this type of fraud was first highlighted by the Gardai and Financial Institutions in July 2015.

The Gardai have received complaints of instances of "vishing” where injured parties have personally lost sums in excess of €38,000.

In a case reported in the last two weeks an injured party transferred over €22,000 on the instructions of a person purporting to be a named Garda Superintendent.

In another recent case an injured party was directed to transfer €30,000 by a caller purporting to be a Garda Superintendent but checked with her local Garda Station who confirmed that this was a bogus request and the transaction did not proceed.

In these instances the bank’s customers were briefed by offenders that these sums were to be transferred to secure locations in other jurisdictions.

Detective Superintendent Gerard Walsh from the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation says: "These criminals are targeting vulnerable, usually elderly people and I want to warn people to never give anyone details of their bank accounts or credit card numbers.

"Please remember that no genuine person or organisation will call and ask for your details. Gardaí are asking community organisations, relatives or neighbours of elderly people to help us to get this message across.”