A CAMPAIGN has been launched to stop scammers taking cash from vulnerable people in Sandwell.

Trading Standards officers are urging shop owners to help them in the fight against fraudsters.

It follows a series of complaints to Sandwell Council about conmen who are cold-calling people and falsely promising them loan, big refunds for bank charges or mis-sold payment protection insurance, or large sums of money supposedly won in prize draws or sweepstakes.

The fraudsters always ask their victims to pay money up-front and usually tell them there is a fee to process their ‘claim’.

They then ask people to transfer money through services such as Western Union and Moneygram, or buy Ukash vouchers and then give them the reference codes, which is all the information the scammers need to con their victims out of money.

Posters have been sent to shops that have PayPoint or PayZone facilities where customers are able to transfer money or buy UKASH vouchers.

Officers are asking shop workers to keep an eye out for potentially vulnerable and older customers who may be being targeted by the scammers and to look out for older or vulnerable customers who ask to transfer money or buy UKASH vouchers, particularly if it is outside their normal routine.

Anyone who suspects they are danger of being a victim of a scam call Sandwell Trading Standards 0121 569 6628 or the police 101.