Sidmouth resident targeted by PayPal email scam


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Police have reminded people in Sidmouth not to give out personal information online after residents were targeted in a spate of fraudulent emails.

In one case, a Sidmouth woman received a bogus message, fraudulently claiming to be from PayPal, last Wednesday saying her account had been limited. It went on to say that she would need to provide her details ‘as soon as possible’ to sort the problem out. The resident, who wished to remain anonymous, filled in the form, but after speaking to her son, contacted her bank to stop fraudsters from taking any money. The email read: “This is part of our Buyer Protection program. We’re concerned that someone is using your account without your knowledge. Recent activity from your account seems to have occurred in a suspicious way or under circumstances that may be different than usual.”

It then told the resident that, to remove the limitations, she should follow the link and log in to her account and provide details. The woman’s son contacted the Herald to warn residents to be ‘web smart’ to avoid being caught out. He said: “She almost fell for it and unfortunately filled out her details. After mentioning it to me, I immediately thought it was a scam and asked her to contact the bank, which she has done and hopefully rectified it. We just want others to be aware of this possibly dangerous and costly scam. We managed to avoid it in time but others may not.”

A police spokesman said: “Our main advice is to not respond or give out bank details if you think it is a scam and to report it to Action Fraud.”

More information about online fraud is available on the Devon and Cornawall Police website, or call Action Fraud on 0300 1232040.

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