Pensions - Articles - Pandemic providing perfect camouflage for scammers

The FCA has revealed today that 1.4 million adults have lost money to a Covid-19 scam. Canada Life research suggests that one in ten UK adults has been targeted or knows someone who has, by a coronavirus vaccination scam, for 18-34 year olds this rises to one in four.

 Andrew Tully, technical director at Canada Life responds to warnings about the rise of Covid-19 vaccination scams: “As we make great progress on vaccinations across the country it is sad to see that con artists will stop at nothing to make a quick buck. The pandemic has unfortunately provided a new opportunity for fraudsters to prey on vulnerabilities and fears. The problem is widespread, new research from Canada Life suggests that one in ten UK adults have already been fraudulently contacted, or knows someone who has been contacted, with the offer of a Covid-19 vaccine. Worryingly, this number rises to one in four of 18-34-year olds. Remember, we are very fortunate to have the amazing NHS which is free at the point of use and that includes administering the coronavirus vaccines.

 “We know that this move towards vaccination scams has not appeared from nowhere and that financial scams are unfortunately a prevalent scourge on our society. The pandemic has sadly provided perfect camouflage for the scammers to increase their activity as they prey on the elderly, vulnerable and financially stretched. The impact of scams is not just a financial hit, the hidden costs to mental health can be severe as victim’s ability to trust is shattered overnight. Despite the public message campaigns and the ban on cold-calling, the scammers are either simply ignoring the law or looking to sophisticated campaigns over social media in order to con people out of their savings. We all need to be on our guard and also look out for other family members. The rapid rise of romance scams and using the Track and Trace service only serves to show we all need to be vigilant, scam aware and follow the simple rule of thumb - if it appears too good to be true, it inevitably is. Simply walk away, hang up, or delete the email or text.”

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