17 Jul 2019
The national fraud and cyber crime reporting centre is warning that scammers are now targeting pension pots of all sizes.
Action Fraud wants you to know the warning signs and how to keep your hard-earned savings safe.
However, pension scams can be hard to spot.
The centre says that fraudsters can be articulate and financially knowledgeable - with credible websites, testimonials and materials that are hard to distinguish from the real thing.
Scammers usually contact people out of the blue via phone, e-mail or text, or they even advertise online.
Action Fraud highlights that fraudsters will design attractive offers to persuade people to transfer their pension pot to them, or to release funds from it.
The money may be put into in unusual and high-risk investments like overseas property, renewable energy bonds, forestry or storage units.
Alternatively, your savings might be invested in more conventional products, but within an unnecessarily-complex structure which hides multiple fees and high charges.
Or your cash might simply be stolen outright.
Scam offers often include:
Action Fraud says there are four simple steps to protect yourself from pension scams:
The public are urged to report any suspected scam to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or at www.actionfraud.police.uk
If you've agreed to transfer your pension and now suspect a scam, contact your pension provider straight away. It may be able to stop a transfer that hasn't taken place yet.
If you are unsure of what to do, contact The Pensions Advisory Service for help on 0800 011 3797.