Jobseekers in Calderdale and rest of West Yorkshire hit by scam

Jobseekers across West Yorkshire are being urged to watch out for a scamers trying to trick them into handing over their bank details.

Officers say they know the con has so far netted 20 people in this region but there could be more.

In every part of West Yorkshire, police have received reports that jobseekers, predominantly young people aged 18 to 22, have lost hundreds of pounds after responding to fraudulent adverts on job websites, having phone interviews and being tricked into giving their bank details.

They say each case is similar, with people seeing a job advertised on a website, applying to a hotmail email address, then receiving a phone call from a man purporting to be from the company advertising the vacancy.

A brief phone interview takes place and the victims are asked for their bank details so that a credit check can be carried out against them.

Days later, the victims receive a further call from the fraudster, telling them that money has been paid into their accounts by mistake. This has happened several times to the same victim in some cases.

In each case, when the victims pay the money back to the suspect, they discover that loans have been taken out in their names and it is this money that they have given to the fraudster.

In one such case, a 20-year-old Leeds woman thought she had applied for a job at Harvey Nichols in Leeds. She was called by a man pretending to be from the store, an interview was carried out and bank details requested.

Several days later the woman received a call to say that £400 had been paid into her account by mistake. After transferring the money to an account provided by the suspect, the woman was for targeted for another £400. She was then told that her job interview had been postponed.

It was after this call that she realised that a loan had been taken in her name.

A 25-year-old Huddersfield man has been arrested in connection with the fraud and is currently on bail pending further inquiries.

Police are appealing for any victims who have not done so, to contact them via PC Lynsey Fitzgerald via 101.

They are also urging people not to provide bank details to people over the phone and are reiterating that the only time such details would be exchanged in a job application would be in writing at the point of formally accepting a job.