A Burnham-On-Sea resident has warned people to be aware of a new telephone scam after her elderly mother was targeted.

The pensioner uses the Telephone Preference Service to prevent ‘cold calls’ from marketing companies and this week she received a phone call out of the blue from a company requesting her bank details to keep the screening service running.

In fact, the Telephone Preference Service is a free service and users do not need to provide payment details.

“Fortunately, mum didn’t pass over her bank details, but many elderly people may not be so wise and could fall victim to this scam,” says the reader, who has asked not to be named.

“It’s a new version of the usual telephone scam to get people’s bank details. I would urge families to be aware of it and to ensure their elderly relatives are aware.”

A TPS spokesperson says: “We are aware of a number of organisations that call people claiming to be the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) and try to charge consumers for registration.”

“It is free to sign up to the TPS register. We will never contact you requesting payments or credit card details. Once an individual’s telephone number is on the TPS, it will remain on it and there is no need to update your registration.”

If you suspect that you have been contacted by a fraudulent organisation, then you can contact Action Fraud to report your concerns via http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/