DETECTIVES today revealed they are linking two bank card fraud cases which left two women thousands of pounds out of pocket.
The victims had their handbags stolen and then received a phone call from a man pretending to be from a bank fraud department, asking for their PIN numbers.
Both women were duped into handing the numbers over and had more than £3,000 stolen from their accounts.
Police have released CCTV footage of a woman who they believe is linked to the scams.
A 60-year-old woman from Thornton was walking to Asda supermarket on Cherry Tree Road in Marton when she lost her purse.
She then received a phone call from the thief who tricked her into revealing her PIN. The thief, who was working with a female accomplice, managed to withdraw £,1879 of foreign currency as well as £1,600 from another card.
The thieves also tried to buy £2,415 in jewellery but the transaction failed.
The second theft happened on the same day when a man stole an employee’s handbag from a care home in South Shore.
The 56-year-old victim was also tricked into disclosing her PIN. A total of £900 was stolen from her bank and the thieves also attempted to withdraw 2000 euros from Thomson Travel in Blackpool.
The conman struck on Friday, July 29.
Police have been gathering evidence and now believe the two incidents are linked.
Officers have released CCTV images and an Evofit of a man and woman they would like to speak to.
Det Con Simon Pritchard, from Blackpool Police, said: “I would appeal to anyone who recognises the woman to come forward and contact the police.
“We are linking both incidents and it has been a distressing time for the two victims who have been the victims of fraud.
“You should never give your pin number out to anybody and should you receive a call from a person purporting to be from your bank then check their credentials.”
Anyone with information is asked to call Blackpool police on 0845 1253545.