PSNI issue iTunes gift card scam warning

Police have urged the public to be vigilant after reports of an iTunes gift card scam

POLICE have urged the public to be vigilant after reports of fraudsters posing as tax officials attempting to trick people into making bogus payments.

It come after scammers purporting to represent the HMRC have persuaded members of the public into making a payment.

Police said "there have been a number of reported incidents", including one case when "an older person lost a significant quantity of cash before police intervened".

The PSNI said victims are being contacted in a variety of methods and, including occasions when the scammers ask for payment in iTunes gift card voucher codes because they can be easily redeemed and easily sold on.

The fraudsters do not need the physical card to redeem the value and instead get victims to read out the serial code on the back of their card over the phone.

PSNI Superintendent Simon Walls said: "Police are urging members of the public to always air on the side of caution with any text, call, email or letter asking for payment or personal details in order to release money, refund fees, pay lottery wins or supply a holiday, giveaway or service".

HMRC will never contact you by telephone and ask for payment of tax arrears by iTunes vouchers or similar payment methods.

He added: "Scammers are inventive and can be very convincing, but each scam is designed to tempt you to drop your guard.

"If you are at all suspicious about a call that you receive, hang up and phone the organisation that the person is purporting to represent to check their authenticity.

"Ideally make the call from another telephone so you can be sure the original caller has not remained on the line."

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