Residents in Teignbridge are being reminded to be on their guard against conmen following recent reports of council tax scams operating in the area.
In the past two weeks Teignbridge Council has been made aware of two instances of scammers at work. One customer was phoned by somebody implying their council tax direct debit had been unpaid and claiming to work in the council’s ‘London office’, which doesn’t exist. In another, an elderly resident was visited by a man described as ‘polite and well dressed’, who may also have been carrying a fake ID, who tried to obtain financial information by offering a tax rebate.
In both cases the callers tried to obtain personal and banking information, and Teignbridge Council is reminding customers that it will never ask for personal banking details in this way. While debit and credit card payments may on occasion be taken over the phone, for example when calling a customer about an outstanding balance, customers can always choose to hang up and call the council back via its main office number, 01626 361101, or pay online on the Teignbridge site.
Cllr Sally Morgan, Teignbridge Executive Spokesperson for Customer and Financial Services told the Devon Week: “While these kinds of scam are thankfully rare in Teignbridge, we do seem to have the occasional outbreak and would remind everyone to be on their guard.
“A genuine council employee will always be happy to provide their name, let you examine their ID, or call the council on 01626 361101. Remember, if you are in any doubt you should never disclose personal or financial information. In our experience these conmen are polite, non-threatening and will soon leave if they are challenged, but if you believe there is any risk to your safety then please dial 999. Otherwise please call us on 01626 361101 to report the incident.”
(from a press release)