AN ELDERLY woman had almost £5,000 drained from her bank account after a scammer posed as a doctor from her surgery.

The 83-year-old was called by someone who said they were from a GP surgery in her area.

He said the surgery had an arrangement with her GP in Chelmsford to offer her the flu jab, as her own surgery was experiencing a shortage of staff.

Already waiting for a date for her flu jab, the pensioner did not suspect anything.

The woman's daughter Lynne Brown, from Colchester, said: "Because she is housebound, the scammer gave her an appointment for a nurse to call and gave her a date and time, and the name of the nurse.

"It was all very believable, and the caller was very charming.

"Then because my mum suffers from severe pain in her arms she asked if she could have the injection in her leg. She was told this was not a problem and a special needle would be used, but it would cost £1.50."

The elderly woman was asked to pay over the phone with her bank card.

The scammer already new the woman's name, date of birth and address.

Unfortunately the woman complied, and her bank account was emptied out within two days.

Lynne said: "They took the money out in seven instalments, totalling £4,800.

"Four of the instalments were from Yorkshire."

Lynne called the anti-fraud team at Essex Police as well as her mum's bank.

The money has been refunded and the bank is investigating to prove fraud.

The family is asking others to be vigilant and hang up if they receive a similar call.

We contacted Essex Trading Standards for an update.

A spokesman said: "Our heart goes out to this resident and all victims of telephone scams such as this. 

“We urge people to remember these rules when dealing with unsolicited telephone calls: 

  • If you are not sure, hang up the phone.
  • Check with someone you trust before agreeing to anything
  • Never give out your personal information, treat your personal information like cash
  • A legitimate business, even your bank, will NEVER ask for your PIN number
  • It’s OK to end the conversation before it starts"