POLICE are warning residents to be vigilant about scam artists promising ready cash over the phone.
South Yorkshire residents have been phoned by fraudsters claiming to be from loan companies or advising on PPI claims with the promise of around £4,000 cash in return for an upfront payment over the phone.
The fraudsters are cold calling people and advising them that they are eligible for a loan if they buy a UKASH voucher.
Potential victims are told that to release the funds they must make a Ukash payment to cover administration costs.
They are asked to buy a voucher from a UKASH outlet and give the 19 digit voucher code to the offenders.
UKASH, a genuine company, is used to pay for goods and services online through the approved merchants on their website and vouchers can be obtained from PayPoint terminals to be used for purchases.
South Yorkshire Police said that the UKASH couchers can be safe if used as intended, but people will be caught if they step outside the guidelines.
They are reminding people that the 19 digit voucher code number should never be given out to anyone over the phone.
Police Constable Andy Woodruff said: “We would ask the public particularly those who are elderly or vulnerable to be on their guard and ensure they do not fall prey to these scams.”
“If someone phones you and seems to have knowledge of your personal details or circumstances, do not confirm any information with them or provide them with any missing details.”
“Be very cautious; ask for their name and a contact number, so that you can verify their details.”
“If in any doubt contact the police.”