Residents across Derbyshire are being encouraged to protect their pensions from scammers.
Derbyshire Constabulary is teaming up with Get Safe Online as part of a targeted campaign aimed at raising awareness to help to protect people falling victim to pension fraud.
Pension fraudsters will contact their victims out of the blue, either over the phone, over text message or in person, by offering deals that appear too good to miss.
They will often try to con their victims by claiming that they will be able to access their pension pot before the age of 55, or by using incentives such as upfront cash, a free ‘pension review’ or offering ‘one-off’ investment opportunities.
Detective Constable Julie Wheeldon from the East Midlands Fraud and Financial Investigation Unit said: “Fraudsters can appear highly convincing so it is important that you look out for the warning signs to help to keep yourself, friends and family safe.
“Some signs to look out for include a call, email or text claiming to be from the government offering retirement planning advice, being offered upfront cash incentives by pushy advisors, or being promised that you would be able to access your personal or company pension before a certain age.
“Please remember if something sounds too good to be true then more often than not it is. Thankfully, there are simple steps that you can take to keep your future money safe from scammers.
“This includes never giving out personal or financial information over the phone and always checking the credentials of the company and its advisors. They should be registered with the Financial Conduct Authority.”
Other advice from the Pension Regulator’s includes:
Ask for a statement showing how your pension will be paid at retirement, and question who will look after your money until then;
Speak to an adviser that is not associated with the deal you’ve been offered, for unbiased advice;
Never be rushed into agreeing to a pension transfer.
For information around frauds and scams visit the dedicated Stamp out Fraud in Derbyshire webpage at www.derbyshire.police.uk/stampoutfraud|.
If anyone has lost money to pension fraud report it to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or visit www.actionfraud.police.uk|.
If anyone has been cold called and suspect it was a scam report it to the Financial Conduct Authority online at www.fca.org.uk/consumers/scams/report-scam/investment-scams-form| or by contacting their Consumer Helpline on 0800 111 6768.