Police are appealing for help in the search for two men linked to a number of fraud cases that targeted businesses in Ashtead.

Between Saturday, September 21 and Thursday, October 10, four businesses in Craddocks Parade, Ashtead, were targeted by fraudsters, police said.

The fraudsters reportedly pose as customers coming into shops as a pair, distracting the person serving them and altering the payment amount to appear as if they have been overcharged.

The other 'customer' distracts the person serving and the payment has another zero added, making it ten times the original amount, and the payment goes through.

The customer then notices this fraudulent 'overcharge' and becomes visibly distressed, so the person serving refunds the 'overcharge', police described.

Sergeant Lee Wells, of the Mole Valley Safer Neighbourhood Team offered further details of the fraud case.

"We are keen to hear from anyone who recognises the two men in the CCTV images, as we believe they may be able to assist with our enquiries after four businesses were targeted by a card scam," he said.

"The businesses charged a customer an amount to pay, and when the suspect was handed the chip and pin machine, the amount was changed to a much higher amount without the shop knowing.

"The customer then came back into the store claiming they had been overcharged, and had the money refunded onto a different bank card."

Sgt Wells added that police were working with banks in order to devise a solution that will help businesses falling prey to such a scheme in the future.

"Following this string of incidents, we are working with banks to come up with some technology to prevent this from happening," he said.