Business and investment Scam awareness

Scams aren’t a minor inconvenience: they cause distress and misery. Every year more than three million people in the UK fall victim to scams, losing hundreds and even thousands of pounds

There are fake lotteries and prize draws, bogus health cures, dodgy investment schemes, pyramid selling and phishing - to name just a few.

Don’t be a victim, be scam aware and:

  • reject cold calls offering investment or pension advice;
  • don’t be rushed – resist pressure to make a decision straight away;
  • never send money to someone you have never met or don’t trust;
  • you shouldn’t have to pay anything to get a prize; and
  • walk away from job ads that ask for money in advance.

Remember your bank or building society will never:

  • attend your home to collect cash, your pin, payment card or cheque book if you are a victim of fraud;
  • phone you to ask for your PIN or your online banking password; or
  • ask you to transfer money to a new account for fraud reasons.

Nor do genuine computer firms call you to help you fix your computer.

Basically if it sounds too good to be true it probably is, so if:

  • you are contacted out of the blue – be suspicious;
  • the call, letter, email or text has arrived unexpectedly;
  • you’ve never heard of the lottery or competition they are talking about and didn’t buy a ticket; or
  • they are telling you to keep it a secret.

Don’t suffer in silence – speak out about scams!

Tell a friend, neighbour or relative about any scam you become aware of. If there’s anyone in your family who might be vulnerable to this sort of crime, find out how you can help protect them or how to spot a scam.

Get advice

Contact Citizens Advice Consumer Service, they can provide advice and pass details onto trading standards to investigate.

Report scams or suspected scams to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

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