Economic crime is very prevalent across the city and county with criminals targeting all sectors of society.
The latest crime statistics for Kilkenny were outlined at Monday’s meeting of the Joint Policing Committee which showed an increase in fraud and economic crime over the past 12 months.
A garda spokesperson told the committee that ‘everyone is being targeted’ in these scams and highlighted one incident where a pensioner had half his life savings stolen during ‘a laptop takeover’.
“Before he knew it his bank account was empty,” he said and warned people to delete all unsolicited text messages and emails requesting bank details and to never click on a link in an unsolicited message.
The garda explained that when you enter your details in these scams you enable the fraudster to takeover your account and steal the monies from it.
“There is a huge campaign to try and curb these incidents,” he added.
Cllr Martin Brett said that economic crime is ‘near enough to an epidemic’.
“Not a day goes by that you don’t hear about someone getting tapped,” he said and told the meeting that in one day he received three scam messages on his phone purporting to be from reputable companies.
The latest figures show that to date this year there have been 106 incidents of crime and economic fraud in the Kilkenny and Thomastown garda districts compared to 99 in the same period last year.
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