PMQs: Johnson says UK ‘must be vigilant’ for pension scams
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The UK financial services provider has warned the scam involved fraudsters purporting to be from Legal & General, offering ISAs and Bonds under its name. Worryingly, the scammers use falsified documents and email addresses using the Legal & General branding.
The scam alert, published on the company’s website, reads: “A small number of investors have been targeted by fraudsters who claim to be offering Legal & General ISAs or Bonds called the L&G Dynamic Bond, L&G UK Bond or L&G Guaranteed Return Bond.
“In an attempt to legitimise the scam, fraudsters impersonate representatives of Legal & General and use falsified documents and email addresses using our branding and intellectual property.
“If you have been approached regarding these products, please contact us at [email protected] or call 03700 500 955 from UK.
“From abroad, call+ 44 1737 370 370 (from abroad).
“Our contact centre is open Monday to Friday 9.00-17.00.”
Legal and General has a dedicated guide to helping people stay safe from scams.
This includes a section on investment and pension scam tactics.
“Investment scams usually involve someone unexpectedly calling and inviting you to invest quickly in a scheme with very attractive returns and low risk,” the guide states.
“Remember, it’s easy enough to produce authentic looking paperwork and add pressure by making it a ‘limited time offer’ but don’t be rushed into a quick decision – always take the time to make proper checks before investing your money.
“Pension scams usually follow the same approach as investment scams – contact out of the blue for an offer that’s too good to be true.
“It usually involves promising to help you ‘unlock’ your pension by transferring money to a different pension scheme.
“Retirees and people nearing retirement are targeted because they’re able to access large sums of money.”
There’s also a wealth of tips on how people can reduce the risk of falling victim to a scam.
Action Fraud, the City of London Police and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), recently issued a warning about “clone” firm scams.
It came after more than £78million was stolen via “clone” firm investment scams.
Since the UK first went into lockdown, the number of these types of investment scams being reported increased by 29 percent.
On average, victims have been scammed out of more than £45,000 each.
Superintendent Sanjay Andersen, from the City of London Police’s National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, said: “The coronavirus pandemic has caused many people to feel financial worry and uncertainty – something which criminals will feel no remorse about capitalising on.
“We have sadly seen an increase in the number of investment fraud reports in 2020, compared to the previous year, with a spike in reports in the summer, after the first national lockdown was lifted.
“This new trend of ‘clone firms’ is particularly worrying as it makes it harder for people to spot a scam.
“Investing any amount of money comes with an element of risk and its important people take time to do their research by visiting www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart and seek independent impartial advice from an expert.
“If you think you’ve already invested into a fraudulent scheme, report it to Action Fraud.”
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