With their credible websites and testimonials, it can be hard to distinguish scammers from the real thing. The new ScamSmart campaign aims to raise awareness about phoney pension plans. It also helps people report fraudulent activity.
Scammers offer attractive deals to lure people in. This may result in someone transferring their pension pot or releasing funds to the scammer. Their money is then invested in unusual or high-risk investments. This can include overseas property or renewable energy bonds.
To help people identify scams, TPR has revealed common tactics, which can include:
- Contact out of the blue
- Guaranteed returns
- Free pension reviews
- Access to a pension before the age of 55
- Pressure to act quickly
ScamSmart has also promoted four steps, to encourage people to protect themselves:
- Reject any unexpected offers
- Check who you’re dealing with using the FCA register
- Don’t rush into a decision
- Seek impartial advice from organisations such as The Pensions Advisory Service or Pension Wise
Unfortunately, regardless of campaigns like ScamSmart, many people do become victims of pension scammers. If you suspect you have encountered a scam, you can report it in the following ways:
- To the FCA by contacting their Consumer Helpline on 0800 111 6768, or using the reporting form at fca.org.uk
- To Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040, or at actionfraud.police.uk
- If you’re in the middle of a transfer, contact your provider immediately and then get in touch with The Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS) at thepensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk
Want to find out more information about planning for later life? Our experts at Severn Estate Planning can offer you advice, guidance and a range of legal services. Call us on 01743 387990. Or, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to chat with our friendly advisors.