Even after the arrest of two suspects in marktheidenfeld on tuesday afternoon – they are now in custody – the so-called "shock calls" continue in the wurzburg and schweinfurt area away. Thus, on wednesday, two new traps were reported, in which fraudsters were successful and stormed with over ten thousand euros. The wurzburg police are investigating and are again issuing a warning against this phenomenon – especially since the scam has now been extended to e-mails.
The scam is comparable to the grandchild trick and has become more common in the recent past. In almost all reported cases, the caller spoke russian. The victims are so far almost exclusively people with russian or eastern european migrant backgrounds.
This was also the case on wednesday, when an 87-year-old woman received a call from a woman pretending to be her daughter-in-law. She excitedly described how she had seriously injured a girl when she fell down the stairs. In the course of the conversation, an alleged lawyer also intervened and demanded 30 000 euros. This shock apparently had an effect on the victim, because shortly afterwards she handed over 10,000 euros to an unknown person. A little later it turned out that the story was fictitious and the money is now gone.
With a similar story, the fraudsters were previously successful with an 82-year-old man from the same city district. This one lost 2000 euro.
In both cases, the unknown person collecting the money is described as follows: 18 to 24 years old, slim and about 1.75 to 1.80 meters tall. He had two to three centimeters of short hair and wore no glasses or beard. He was dressed in a dark gray or black long-sleeved shirt and dark pants, possibly blue jeans and spoke russian.
Always be suspicious
The police therefore advises to be suspicious when people demand large amounts of money on the phone and to immediately notify the police via the emergency number 110. You should not disclose any details about your family or financial situation, and always call the usual number of your relative first to check. Moreover, you should never give money to people you do not know personally.
The same applies to the shock mails, which are now also circulating, as the schweinfurt police report.
There, a 43-year-old woman filed a complaint for e-mail fraud. An unknown person had gained access to your e-mail account and sent shock e-mails under your name to your friends and acquaintances. The recipients were also asked to transfer money abroad. So far it remained with the attempt. The police prasidium unterfranken warns against this apparently nationwide scam.
In an unknown way the fraudster managed to obtain the access data to the e-mail account of the victim. Equipped with this, he sent a shock e-mail to all the people in the address book with the following content: the owner of the e-mail address had lost money and identification papers in scotland. She urgently needed money for a return flight and therefore asked for a return call at the hotel reception desk. On the phone, the caller receives a recorded message asking him to transfer a certain amount to scotland via western union.
After sending the call for help, the fraudster had apparently deleted the contact addresses and changed the password. The victim was thus unable to access her e-mail account or warn the persons originally listed in the address book of the fraud.
With this scam the fraudsters rip off unsuspecting victims twice over. Because the number given in the mail is not the hotel as indicated, but an expensive paid hotline abroad. If the credulous caller then follows the instructions played there, the money is usually lost forever, because the fraudsters can collect it anywhere in the world.
e-mails are considered spam, the police advise. In no case should you call or transfer money abroad. Here, too, you should immediately contact the police – and the sender of the e-mail, because he usually does not know that such demands are being made in his name.
If you notice that your e-mail account has been misused for such mails, you should contact the provider as soon as possible. Often deleted address directories can be restored and thus damage to friends can be averted. The police advises to choose reliable and changing passwords and warns not to run unknown file attachments. Constantly updated virus protection also makes it difficult for computer fraudsters to obtain data.