Stay safe from fraudsters this summer

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Personal Investing

16 July 2020

Whatever you’re planning this summer, don’t let the scammers succeed.

It’s not quite the summer we imagined is it? Footie without the crowds, social distancing in pubs, ditching the great summer getaway altogether. These past few months have left many of us feeling emotional and, at times, a little vulnerable. And that’s just how fraudsters want us to feel. 

Apart from having to adjust to the ‘new normal’, one of the more disturbing features of the COVID-19 outbreak has been the rise in increasingly sophisticated scammers getting us to part with our hard-earned cash. With many of us using the internet to buy goods and services over lockdown, we may have had to share personal debit or credit card details with suppliers. In most cases, these suppliers are bona fide. In a minority of cases they are not.

Scammers are also targeting personal investments. No longer content with trying to get us to part with cash, more sophisticated investment and pension scams are coming to light. With many of us uncertain about the long-term impact of COVID-19 on our jobs, savings, and pension pots, being offered a get-rich-quick investment scheme over the phone, or via text or email, seems too good to be true. And, if that’s the case, then it probably is.

Rest assured, though, that we take the issue of fraud very seriously and are working tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure we quash these schemes as, and when, they arise. We’ve also put together some information about the sorts of scams fraudsters might try.  You can read about these  on our dedicated page, help to stay safe from scams

So, this summer, whether you have (finally) decided to take the plunge and go abroad, or whether you’re staying in the comfort of your own home, admiring those newly manicured flower beds, here are a few reminders about how to stay safe from fraudsters:

The ‘gotta getaway’ holidaymakers

Before you start socially distancing on the beach, think about the following:

  • Be extra vigilant when handing over your holiday deposit to unknown sources.
  • Think twice before giving your personal credit or debit card details to anyone.
  • Be wary of holiday insurance scams, offering temptingly low premiums.

For those preferring to stay at home

Before you get to enjoy the fruits of your garden makeover, be aware of some of these details:

  • When checking ISA or pension valuations online, don’t share your secure login details with anyone.
  • Double-check any financial statements you receive online, or in the post. Ensure you sense check any follow-up actions you’re asked to complete, and if in any doubt, seek help before acting.
  • If you receive a phone call or email out of the blue, assume they are a scam and report them to your provider or other
  • Avoid being pressured into any ‘summer specials, for a limited period only’ where financial products are concerned. Being time pressured is a classic fraudster trick. We would never pressurise a customer into investing. Nor do we give out financial advice.

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Risk warning

Please remember the value of your investment and any income from it may fall as well as rise and is not guaranteed. You may get back less than you invest.

Please note the information, data and any references in this article were accurate at the time of writing. Please check the date of the content if you’re looking for up to date investment commentary or tax-year related information.

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