Police are warning Nelson residents of fraudsters after an elderly person nearly lost $40,000 in a scam.

Nelson police have found vulnerable members of the community are being targeted for financial fraud. The offenders tried to extract money from elderly residents at a retirement village.

The offenders nearly got away with the cash, had it not been for some clever work by the victim's bank's fraud unit.

Police advise people to be wary of those demanding money for what appear to be non-legitimate reasons.

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Nelson Bays Area Commander Inspector Mat Arnold-Kelly said targeting the elderly is a shameful crime.

"This is a timely reminder to people to take good care of their parents and grandparents. Remind them of the dangers of giving information to people over phones or via computers.

"We would also urge people to keep an eye out for their neighbours who don't have family support, as the more isolated people are, the more vulnerable they become to these predators."

"If you have any issues, or see behaviour in your neighbourhood that seems suspicious, please contact the police."

People can also provide information anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.