Watch out for vouchers phone scam

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Residents are being warned about a telephone scam after a Kirkby woman was threatened with legal action if she didn’t pay £50 in exchange for prize money.

Karen McCarken complained to the county council’s trading standards team after she received an unsolicited phone call claiming to be from Royal Mail.

The caller claimed Karen had won £10,000 in prize money but would need to pay £50 to cover administration charges.

Karen said: “It was a really upsetting experience and unfortunately my telephone company are unable to track the call.

“The man on the phone was very threatening and said he would get Royal Mail’s lawyers on to me if I did not give them £50 in Ukash vouchers.

“I have been a victim of a Ukash scam before so I knew this request was not right, but my fear is that more vulnerable people would fall foul of this scam.”

Ukash vouchers are a legitimate way to transfer money and can be purchased from many shops and newsagents.

However, scammers often request this payment method as once they obtain the voucher code from the consumer they can claim the value of the voucher without providing any goods or services.

Trading standards officer Sarah Ridley, said: “Our advice is that if it seems too good to be true then it is probably is. Treat Ukash voucher codes just like cash and don’t give these out to unknown companies.”

Information on safe use of Ukash vouchers is available at www.ukash.com.