WIGAN nurseries, hotels and taxi firms have been put on red alert amid a major scam.
The deception has seen businesses’ being cold-called from someone claiming they are bailiffs working on behalf of a court, attempting to recover funds for a non-existent debt.
The caller will then request payment by means of bank transfer and if this is refused, will threaten to visit the premises to recover the debt that is owed.
A range of different businesses are being targeted; including nurseries as well as manufacturers, hotels and taxi services.
The national fraud and cyber crime reporting centre Action Fraud today urged firms to protect themselves.
A spokesman said: “Confirm what the debt is regarding; bailiffs are only used to recover certain debts such as council tax, child support and compensation orders.
“Bailiffs are not used to recover debts relating to private advertisement; these would be collected by debt collectors.
“Double-check with the Court or originating company to confirm whether the suspects are legitimate; if you use a landline make sure you hear the dialling tone prior to dialling as the suspects could still be on the line.
“Request details of the debt in writing to access its legitimacy.
“Do not feel rushed or intimidated to make a decision based on a phone call.”
If any readers have been affected by this fraud or any other scam, they are urged to report it to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting http://www.actionfraud.police.uk|www.actionfraud.police.uk|www.actionfraud.police.uk.