POLICE investigating a number of incidents where elderly victims have been defrauded of tens of thousands of pounds are urging residents of Ryedale to be vigilant.

In 2016, police say there were 2,467 reported incidents of fraud across North Yorkshire.In more than 1,000 of those cases, the victim was aged 70 years or over.

A number of these incidents such as computer software service fraud, advance fee frauds, pension fraud and timeshares and holiday club fraud, will have been facilitated by the victim being scammed via telephone.

Detective Chief Inspector Jon Hodgeon, head of fraud and economic crime at North Yorkshire Police, said: “The fraudsters who operate these scams are highly organised and very adept in convincing people that they are legitimate.

“They often use clever tactics to gain personal information from the victim, which they will then use to convince the victim that they can be trusted.

“We are appealing for elderly members of the community to take some simple steps to help them avoid falling victim to this type of crime.”For more information and advice visit northyorkshire.police.uk/fraud.