FRAUDSTERS are trying to trick members of the public into giving out personal information by pretending to be from Hampshire County Council.

The county’s trading standards service has issued the warning after receiving reports from victims who claim to have been contacted by someone purporting to be from the authority and acting on behalf of the Office of National Statistics.

The caller said the person’s census form was completed incorrectly and they had a fine to pay before asking for basic identification details, which they said was to confirm the census record, and the individual’s bank details so they could process the fine.

The Office of National Statistics has warned that they would never ask for personal information and advised that Hampshire County Council is not acting as an agent for them.

There are reports of a similar scam where information is sent by an email containing a link which could expose personal details.