The Princely Government recently responded to an abrupt rise in attempted phone scams across Monaco. Over the span of 48 hours, about 1,500 scam telephone calls were made on more than 600 Monegasque telephone lines.
Scammers have been mainly targeting elderly people, posing as police officers or lawyers, to try and convince them that a member of their family has been involved in a serious traffic accident. They then ask for a large sum of money (in cash or even jewelry) in order to help the alleged “family member”. The calls are made from foreign operator numbers, often appearing as “hidden”, which makes any attempt at traceability difficult.
In a press release dated 11 December, the government warned about the “malicious phone calls” which hundreds of residents of the Principality have been receiving. The Princely Government has advised the public not to respond to the caller’s request, to block the phone number and do not hesitate to call the police (184.108.40.206)
Phone calls, messages and emails from scammers are criminal acts, usually aimed at encouraging one to hand over money or financial information. When receiving a suspicious phone call, remember to stop, don’t give out any personal or bank details and hang up. You can call the company or person they claim to be and report the scam call.
Advising friends and family members about the call can also a good idea. If any suspicious texts or emails are received, it’s important read the information carefully, look for any details that don’t seem legitimate and remember not to click on any links or give out any personal or bank details.
If you receive a missed call on your mobile phone from a number you don’t recognize, think twice before calling it back. This is because scammers use automated systems to dial mobile numbers. The call often lasts less than a second and comes up as a missed call.