A new scam guidance tool to help consumers avoid pension scams has been launched by The Pensions Advisory Service.
The awareness-raising tool, which allows consumers to check the 'worthiness' of pensions advice, also provides advice about how consumers can protect themselves from scammers. The tool was officially launched alongside a social media campaign which ran during the first week of January.
According to Aviva's latest Real Retirement Report, over 1 million people have become victims of online scams and a further 1.19 million have been victims of telephone scams. Older age groups in particular were found to be more vulnerable to scams: those aged 75 and over were 'more likely' to be targeted by email and telephone
The new tool will help consumers spot the warning signs of pension scams, some of which are becoming increasingly more complex to spot.
Commenting on the new service, Michelle Cracknell, Chief Executive of the Pension Advisory Service said they wanted to give savers 'every opportunity' to avoid a potential scam and protect their pension savings from 'unscrupulous scammers'. The tool is aimed at consumers who may initially be 'too embarrassed or worried to ask for help'.
She told the media: "We are seeing positive signs that consumers are now more aware of pension scams...but we must continue to offer consumers opportunities to learn about scams, how they work, the consequences and understand how they can best protect their pension savings."
David Parfett, Senior Corporate Pensions Consultant at Aon Employee Benefits said: "This easy-to-use tool could further help people protect their retirement savings from scammers and is welcomed. The Pensions Advisory Service should be commended as they continue to develop ways to thwart scammers, although it is important that it is effectively promoted whilst being kept up-to-date with new scammer tactics."
Cracknell added: "We hope that even more people will be able to access our tool and develop the knowledge and confidence in spotting scams and ultimately protecting their financial future."
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