Older people in Wales are being urged to be wary as scammers set to target the switch to digital for phones.

As the analogue to digital landline upgrade commences, Age Cymru has sounded the alarm bell, cautioning the elderly to remain vigilant and wary of rogue traders eager to exploit this switch.

The charity stated that for majority of customers, the switchover would not necessitate any home installation or additional costs.

Any extra support required would be communicated directly by their phone providers.

Thus any offers to carry out related work in return for some form of payment are likely fraudulent and should be reported to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

Age Cymru’s chief executive, Victoria Lloyd said: "It’s such a shame that we must warn older people to be on their guard in relation to the digital switchover as this is something that should improve people’s experiences of phone services.

"However, given our experience of how rogue traders work we want to forearm older people so they can avoid potentially expensive and emotionally damaging scams and instead take full advantage of the new phone services without any unnecessary fears."

Older scam victims in Wales, according to the Wales Against Scams Partnership (WASP), lose an average of £1,200 over their lifetime.

With around 15,000 cases of fraud reported in Wales each year, the actual figure might be seven times higher, Action Fraud reckons.

BT, the predominant landline supplier in Wales, is organising dozens of events to guide customers about the switch.

Face-to-face customer support will be provided at these gatherings.

The BT team will visit Abergavenny's Red Square on April 4, Cardiff's Cardiff City Stadium on April 10, Newport's Newport Central Library on April 11, Morrisons in Llanelli on April 15-16, Carmarthen Garden Centre, Carmarthen on April 17-18, Ammanford's Ammanford Library on April 19 and 22, Pembroke's Pembroke Dock Community Learning Centre on April 23-24, Cardigan Library on April 25-26 and Lampeter's Co-Op on April 29. They will be at the locations between 10am and 4pm, or 10am and 3pm in Cardiff.

For BT customers, the change will simply involve plugging their home phone handset into a router instead of the wall socket.

Those without a suitable router will be provided one free of charge.

The charity advised those who use personal healthcare alarms to check with their suppliers that they’re prepared for the switchover.

BT customers will be contacted four weeks prior to the switch to ensure they have everything needed.