RESIDENTS are being warned to watch out for bogus phone calls claiming they are owed council tax refunds.
People in Billingham and Wolviston are among those said to be at risk after several potential victims contacted Stockton Borough Council.
They had received phone calls claiming they were entitled to refunds and asked for their bank details.
One man was phoned and told he was due a rebate for five years council tax and was asked to call a London number.
Councillor Terry Laing, cabinet member for corporate management and finance, said: “We would urge anyone who receives a phone call they are not sure about to get in contact with us.
“It can be very distressing to feel pressurised to give out details.”
He said the council tax team does sometimes contact residents by phone but added officers always make it clear who they are and will always be happy for the person to call them back to double check they are genuine.
Anyone with any doubts should never give personal or bank details out.
They can ring the Council Tax helpline on (01642) 397108 or Stockton council on (01642) 393939.