By Jonathan Davies

Fraudsters are earning millions of pounds from a new phone scam known as "number spoofing".

The Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK) said the scam has become increasingly common in recent weeks.

The scam involves fraudsters posing as either a member of staff as the victim's bank, or the police. The criminals create an air of trust by displaying a fake phone number, rather than calling from an 'Unknown' number.

They then explain that the customers' money is not safe, and recommend it is moved. They then persuade the victims' to hand over key information like bank account and sort code, passwords etc.

The fraudsters then use the information to steal funds.

The FFA UK said that businesses and wealthy individuals are the fraudsters' main targets.

"There's a big surge in criminals using this," said an FFA UK spokesman.

"Remember that if a caller is trying to draw your attention to the number on your phone display, it's very unlikely the call is genuine as there is no legitimate reason to point it out," said Craig Jones of the FFA.

"It's not difficult for the criminals to fake a caller ID."

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