A fraud prevention scheme has prevented more than£200,000 ending up in criminal hands in the county in the first 12 months of operation.

Launched in 2016 and piloted in London, the Banking Protocol was rolled out nationwide in May.

It lets banks contact police quickly when they think customers are being scammed.

In the 12 months to the end of October the Banking Protocol has prevented £200,525 in fraud in Hertfordshire.

Katy Worobec, managing director of economic crime at UK Finance, said: “Fraud can have a devastating effect on some of the most susceptible people in society and it’s by working together with law enforcement, and others, that we can make a real difference when it matters most.

“The Banking Protocol is a great example of this collaboration in action protecting people from becoming victims.

“The finance industry is determined to crack down on fraud and is taking action on all fronts – the Protocol is an important weapon in our armoury.”

Detective Inspector Marcus Bromley, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Cyber and Financial Investigation Unit, said: “We were really keen to be involved with the Banking Protocol and roll it out across Hertfordshire as soon as possible.

“The hard work put in to getting the scheme up and running paid off and we saw success within the first week of it being implemented.

“The fact we have continued to see good results proves this was the right course of action to take and I hope the initiative continues to go from strength to strength in order to protect more vulnerable victims.”