Ahh…the new year! The perfect time to make promises to better yourself. Whether you do New Year’s resolutions or not, we at Expert Pension Claims believe that it is imperative to become ‘scam smart’ this 2020. To put it simply, being ‘scam smart’ is being aware of how to spot the common signs of a financial scam, and knowing how to act when faced with them. So, for your benefit, we have compiled a guide that details the top financial scams to watch out for in the new year, and how you can avoid being targeted.

Duplicate banking websites 

In this day and age, financial scams are becoming increasingly sophisticated and scammers will do anything and everything to get a hold of your personal information – and this includes your bank details. Speaking of this, you may receive meticulously crafted emails from what you may think to be from your bank. These emails are easy to spot as they generally contain a false link to a duplicate website which resembles the website of your bank. 

Scam smart tip: If you think you have received one of these emails but are not sure, it’s best to check with your bank straight away. They will then instantly confirm whether they have actually sent this email. 

Facebook impersonation scams 

It’s 2020 and the social media world is booming – so much so that scams are even taking place on Facebook. With scams such as these, duplicate Facebook accounts of existing members will be created and friends of these members will be targeted. After targeting them, the scammer will then ask these individuals for money or loans. 

Scam smart tip: It is so easy to avoid being a victim of a Facebook impersonation scam. As well as updating your security settings, you should never share your password, accept friend requests from strangers, or leave your account logged in on public devices. 

CEO Email Compromise 

Scammers will target all aspects of a person’s life, and this includes their work. For example, they may impersonate a company CEO and send an email to an employee that monitors company finances. Such an email will instruct them to transfer money to an account they control. 

Scam smart tip: If you are an employee who receives such an email, immediately check face-to-face with your boss about whether they have sent this. 

Boiler-room schemes 

You may have heard about this type of financial scam in the news or on various adverts. Boiler-room schemes are crafty operations designed to lure in investors into what is essentially a scam. Such schemes typically take place through cold calls, but they may alternatively also take place via email, text message, or social media. Thankfully, it is quite easy to spot if you are being targeted by boiler-room schemes as they are made up of a whole range of unlawful tactics. These include aggressive sales threats, pressuring people to buy quickly, and making unsolicited offers. 

Scam smart tip: Evidently, the trick to not falling for a boiler-room scheme is to always make sure that you are taking the time to invest properly. Never feel pressured into investing in something that you are not fully certain of, even if it seems urgent. 

Pension Mis-selling 

According to a report by the Financial Times, pension mis-selling payouts have doubled over recent years. So, in the world of financial mis-selling, this type of financial scam is certainly one to look out for. To put it clearly, pension mis-selling occurs when people are persuaded to give up their pension plan for a number of ‘high return/low risk’ opportunities. 

Scam smart tip: From not being made aware of certain pension fees and charges, to your advisor not being experienced as they said they were – there are so many ways to detect if you’ve been mis-sold a pension. More importantly, if you believe you’ve ever been mis-sold, gather all of the relevant information and contact your provider straight away.

How can we help? 

Here at Expert Pension Claims, our dedicated team are more than happy to help you become ‘scam smart’ in 2020, and queries related to pension mis-selling are what we deal with. If you suspect that you have been a victim, get in touch with us immediately by calling 0161 968 0768 or fill in our quick enquiry form on our website to begin your claims proceedings.