FRAUDSTERS are pretending to be from the Government are targeting vulnerable people saying they will be sued unless they pay a fixed sum immediately.

Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Trading Standards officers are warning residents to be wary of the scam.

Some people have received a recorded message claiming to be from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), stating that the department is bringing a lawsuit against the individual.

The recipient is then asked to phone a number back and press “1” to speak to the officer dealing with the case. The council's team is aware of a number of cases across the borough.

Cabinet member for environment, Cllr Karen Shore, said: “This scam has been widely reported, and appears to be targeting elderly and vulnerable people. HMRC is urging people not to respond to these messages.

“These fraudsters are using shock and panic tactics to terrify callers into paying up instantly by phone before they realise they have been scammed.

“If you have been affected, please help HMRC’s investigations by forwarding details such as date, time of call and the telephone number used to”

For further advice or information on this issue or any other Trading Standards matter call Consumer Direct on 08454 040506. If an incident like this has resulted in financial loss report it to Action Fraud