PEOPLE in Cheshire are more likely to fall victim to online shopping and auction fraud according to consumer watchdog Which?

The findings were revealed as fraud crime figures continue to soar across the UK.

According to Which? from 2014 to 2016, online shopping and auction fraud was the most common type of offence reported in Cheshire to Action Fraud.

This was followed by computer-fixing fraud, fees for fake services, online banking scams and fake and stolen property fraud.    

The data was revealed following a Freedom of Information Act request.

There were 264,204 incidents reported in 2016 but this is likely to be a fraction of those that occurred.

After working in Cheshire Police’s economic crime unit for two years, DS Brian Faint knows only too well the lengths con artists will go to as part of a scam.

“We have vulnerable members of the community and people who are not digitally and technologically savvy,” said DS Faint.

“These are the people who are typically targeted.

“The victim might get a phone call at home and it might be this is the only form of contact they have had that day – they prey on that aspect.”
Online fraud is still one of the major problems facing shoppers.

To avoid falling victim to this type of crime, DS Faint has warned shoppers not to buy products which appear to be disproportionally cheap.

“If it is too good to be true it normally is,” he said.
Criminals are constantly finding new ways to rip off people which is why

DS Faint urged people to think twice before handing over money or personal details.

He said: “Make sure you know exactly who you are speaking to.” 

To report fraud or cybercrime call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.