POLICE officers in Barnsley are urging residents to be aware of a Fixed Penalty Notice scam which has been circulating across the region.

South Yorkshire Police’s Fraud Co-ordination team has been made aware of the fraudulent email which tells people they must pay a £25 fine for failing to pay the fee for using their vehicle on the road.

Threats of an increase to a £50 fine are made in the email if it is not paid within the first fortnight - it then asks you to click on the link to pay the fine.

Danielle Lee, a cyber protect officer, said: “This scam email is a typical example of phishing - where cyber criminals try to trick you into clicking on the links within their scam email or text message, or give away sensitive information.

“These messages may look authentic but they are malicious.

“Once clicked, you may be sent to pay money directly into the fraudsters’ bank account, you might have nasty viruses downloaded onto your computer, or your passwords may be stolen.

“Spotting scam emails is becoming increasingly difficult as they look so professional.

“If you are not sure whether the email you have received is genuine, contact the place it claims to be from via their official website or using a known phone number - not via any links within the email.”

If you think you have been sent a suspicious email, forward it to the reporting service at report@phishing.gov.uk.

If you have already responded to the scam or you have lost money, contact your bank and report the crime to Action Fraud on 0330 123 2040 or click here.