Pension scams rife; 14% of over 50s offered free advice and investments

Written by Oliver Wade

Scammers and criminals have been using a variety of “sophisticated” methods in order to con people over the age of 50 out of their savings. Retirement Advantage has warned that people need to be “wary of unsolicited approaches” by email, telephone, text messages or in writing.

Retirement Advantage has found that 14% of non-retired people over the age of 50 with a defined contribution pension or individual pension have been approached by someone offering free pension advice or investment opportunities. However the ban on pension cold calling is looking to lessen the fraudulent activity.

Retirement Advantage pensions technical director Andrew Tully commented: “Pension scams are one of the unintended consequences of the pension freedoms and three years on we are only just getting to grips with the issue. Scammers are using increasingly sophisticated ways of conning people out of their money.

“Following a campaign from the industry led by chartered financial planner Darren Cooke, the government is planning to ban cold calling. This can’t come soon enough and should send a clear message to consumers that unsolicited contact is going to be a scam.

Tully further stated that the “simple message” should be “if it looks too good to be true, it almost certainly will be”.

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