Thousands of people have lost their life savings after falling for a pension scam – TPR warns don’t be next

02 March 2016

The new short film produced by TPR, the campaign comes to life as an emperor scorpion - the now familiar sign of the campaign - crawls over scam material, aimed at providing a stark warning to pension savers. The campaign uses true stories of those who have lost their life savings to expose the continuing threat of pension scams.

Pensions Minister Ros Altmann said: “Scammers wreck lives and we’re working tirelessly to shut down illegal schemes and bring these criminals to justice.

“Reputable financial organisations will not call you out of the blue, so if someone contacts you about your pension or with offers of a pension 'review' I would suggest just hang up, or delete the email.

“Our advice to anyone who is nearing retirement and wants to talk through their options is to call Pension Wise, our unbiased Government information and guidance service, or contact The Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS).”

Lesley Titcomb, Chief Executive at TPR said: “The scorpion campaign has made a real impact by helping scheme trustees and savers spot the hallmarks of a pension scam, but many people are still falling victim to sophisticated pension and investment fraud.

“For the first time in the campaign, information on how to avoid a scam is now separate, focussed and specific for pension savers. We’ve also presented clear steps to guide savers on how to protect themselves.

“Our short film gives a shocking account of how easy it is to lose huge sums of money. It exposes some specific threats such as scams being unwittingly recommended by family and friends, and that scammers often claim to be from government.

“Thousands of people have lost their life savings after falling for a scam. Our message to savers is: Find out how to protect your pension by following our ten-step guide, and don’t be next.”

TPR urges savers to ask TPAS for help and if they suspect they have been scammed to act quickly and let their provider know or call Action Fraud.

Michelle Cracknell, Chief Executive of TPAS said: “As pensions continue to remain firmly in the spotlight, campaigns like the one launched today will continue to help raise consumer awareness and encourage savers to be vigilant of potential pension scams. It’s important that we keep highlighting to consumers the best way to protect their pensions from these opportunists, highlighting the warning signs and making people aware of where they can get help.

“We urge anyone to get in touch with us on 0300 123 1047 if they aren’t sure what they’re being offered or, if they are in the process of transferring their money, to immediately contact their pension provider who may be able to stop the transfer.”