Alias Hire has warned rental firms to be on their guard after a man purporting to work for BBC Worldwide attempted to hire £50,000 worth of kit from the company, including a Panasonic Varicam and lenses.

The man gave a BBC phone number and purchase order, but Alias staff became suspicious when he used a generic email address.

Alias Hire managing director Mike Smith said fraudsters were becoming increasingly sophisticated.

He said: “If they claim to be existing account users, it can be easier for them to hide their real details.”