Devon and Cornwall Police and Trading Standards in Cornwall are warning the public to be on their guard against the latest telephone scam after a woman in Camborne paid £69.99, supposedly for a call-blocking service.

The fraudsters made a spate of nuisance phone calls to the victim, often pretending to be from the Fraud Office, requesting the withdrawal of sums of money from her bank account.

After a while, another caller offered a facility to stop the nuisance calls for a payment of £69.99. The victim gave out her card details and agreed to the service.

But enquiries now suggest that the company is bogus and that other people may have been targeted in the Falmouth area.

Julia Grove from Cornwall Council’s Trading Standards team warns: “It is never safe to deal with any cold callers, whether at the front door or over the phone, no matter how convincing they seem.

"There are genuine ways to protect yourself from nuisance phone calls and advice and assistance is available to anyone who feels that they or an elderly relative are being targeted.”

Anyone who has had similar dealings with a business offering a call-blocking service is asked to contact Cornwall Trading Standards on 0300 1234 191.