Residents should be on the alert for possible scam calls

Residents should be on their guard and report any hoax calls

Residents of East Devon have been warned to be on their guard against a possible telephone scam in which a caller claims to be representing the local authority.

EDDC has received five reports in the past few days and has been in touch with Devon and Somerset Trading Standards, who are investigating after other incidences were reported to them.

There is a pattern to the calls, which are believed to be a scam. A man with what sounds like an Indian accent phones and says he’s from East Devon District Council or Devon Council. He tells the resident he’s calling about an accident in their home.

He then starts to ask for personal details and at this point the residents called so far have challenged him as to why he wants this information. When challenged, the man immediately hangs up.

Reports

Residents have been contacting EDDC’s call centre to report the issue and council staff are passing these reports on to trading standards officers.

The first reports came through at the end of last week and there have been at least three further reports today (Monday 10 May).

The district council has also reported the issue to the Community Safety Officer, who works closely with the Police.

A spokesman at Knowle said:

We would strongly advise people to be wary of any calls like this. No bona fide council officer will phone you out of the blue on a fictitious pretext and start asking for personal details. If you receive a call like this, immediately challenge the person making the call and it’s likely they will hang up. It’s important to report the call to someone though, as it will help the authorities to build up a picture of how active the caller is and what areas he is calling.

If you suspect you have received a scam call, contact Trading Standards on 01392 381381.