People in Lichfield and Burntwood are being warned to be on their guard against a new phone scam.
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) say there have been more than 300 cases over the past year of people being duped by cold callers claiming to work for mobile phone operators.
Victims are offered early handset upgrades or new contracts at significant discounts.
A Staffordshire Police spokesperson said:
“Once customers have been convinced that the deals are genuine and agree to proceed, suspects then ask for their online mobile account credentials, including log-ins, address and bank account details.
“Suspects then place orders with genuine companies on behalf of victims, however select a different handset to that requested and have it shipped to the customer’s address.
“Upon receipt, suspects assure victims that this has been an error and instruct them to return the handset to a different address not affiliated to the mobile company.
“After intercepting the handsets, the suspects cease contact and victims find themselves stuck with no phone and liable for the entirety of a new contract taken out in their name.”
Staffordshire Police spokesperson
The NFIB say reported losses from the scam have already topped £86,000.
People are being urged to only contact their mobile networks on numbers they know are genuine.
Anyone who has been a victim can report it at Actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.