Covid-19 Trustee message BE AWARE that you could be targeted by pension scammers

Important message about potential scamming - a pension scam could result in you losing all your pension savings

You will have seen in the Trustee’s last message that it is seriously concerned about new trends in fraud related to the Covid-19 pandemic. It is aware that the coronavirus outbreak will likely be seen as an opportunity for scammers to target members and trying to lure members to move their pension monies to allegedly “safe havens”. Scammers are targeting pension pots of ALL sizes – MAKE SURE YOU KNOW HOW TO SPOT THE SIGNS.

There are 4 simple steps to protect yourself from pension scams:

1. REJECT UNEXPECTED OFFERS - If you’re contacted out of the blue about your pension, chances are it’s high risk or a scam. Be wary of free pension review offers. A free offer out of the blue from a company you have not dealt with before is probably a scam.

2. CHECK WHO YOU ARE DEALING WITH - Check the Financial Services Register (www.register.fca.org.uk) to make sure that anyone offering you advice or other financial services is FCA-authorised. Check they’re permitted to give pension advice by calling the FCA Consumer Helpline on 0800 111 6768. Beware of fraudsters pretending to be from a firm authorised by the FCA, as it could be a ‘clone firm’. Use the contact details provided on the FCA Register, not the details they give you. If you don’t use an FCA-authorised firm, you risk not having access to compensation schemes.

3. DON’T BE RUSHED OR PRESSURED - Take your time to make all the checks you need – even if this means turning down an ‘amazing deal’.

4. GET IMPARTIAL INFORMATION AND ADVICE - The Pensions Advisory Service (www.thepensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk ) provides free independent and impartial information and guidance.

Pension Wise (www.pensionwise.gov.uk) – If you’re over 50 and have a defined contribution (DC) pension, Pension Wise offers pre-booked appointments to talk through your retirement options.

Financial advisers – It’s important you make the best decision for your own personal circumstances, so you should seriously consider using the services of a financial adviser.

If you suspect a scam, report it
You can report an unauthorised firm or scam to the FCA using the online reporting form or on 0800 111 6768. If you suspect a scam, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or at www.actionfraud.police.uk.

Please think carefully before you consider transferring your pension. You need to be very wary of potential scams. Search ScamSmart which has specific guidance relating to Covid-19. https://www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart/how-avoid-pension-scams

https://www.thepensionsregulator.gov.uk/en/pension-scams Take the 4 simple steps to protect yourself from pension scams.

Looking after your pension is the Trustee’s top priority

Link to: Message of 14/04/20 – FAQs on tax year end
Link to: Message March 2020 – Trustee assurance and prioritisation