‘They spend hours researching you’: Lancaster Police warns Chinese students to be wary of scams

It comes after a spate of alleged fraud attacks against Chinese students across the country

Lancaster Police has issued a warning to Chinese students following a series of alleged fraud attacks this year targeted at Chinese students.

The reported fraud, which often takes place over the phone have involved fraudsters impersonating being “The Shanghai Police”, “The Beijing Police” and the “Chinese Embassy” in an attempt to demand money to secure the supposed freedom of the students’ families.

Whilst Detective Chief Inspector John Roy, from Lancashire Police’s Serious Organised Crime Team, said there have been few reports in Lancashire, “we want people, students and University staff to remain vigilant.”

He added: “Criminals are experts at impersonating people, organisations and the police. They spend hours researching you for their scams, hoping you’ll let your guard down for just a moment – don’t let this happen to you.”

Last week, Bournemouth University wrote to its students to warn of similar scams taking place.

It described examples of students being told they have been implicated in a crime in China by someone claiming to be from a Chinese authority. On other occasions, attackers call their victims or use WeChat to extort the student’s personal information and then use the information to frame that the student has been kidnapped to get money out of the student’s family in China.

In June, UCL equally wrote to Chinese students to give them advice on how to avoid being scammed.

It said Chinese students are often the target of scams because they are unlikely to have lived in the UK before and they will have a significant amount of money in their bank account to pay for their tuition fees and accommodation.

A month previously two international students in Northern Ireland were defrauded out of £105,000 after sending money to someone claiming to be from the Chinese Embassy.

If you think you’ve fallen for a scam report it to ACTION FRAUD by calling 03001232040 or online here. You can also contact Consular Services at the Chinese Embassy in the UK on: +44-20-74368294.

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