Nearly a fifth (17.5 per cent) of retirees have been a victim of a financial scam, research from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) has revealed.

It found that the most common reasons for being a victim of fraud were a website or online advert looking legitimate (28 per cent), being offered high returns (19 per cent) and the telephone caller sounding trustworthy (18 per cent).

Of the respondents who had not fallen victim to a financial scam, 63 per cent said that they had an ongoing concern about being scammed.

More than three-quarters (76 per cent) said this was due to reading about financial fraud in the media, while 24 per cent stated that it was because they knew someone who had fallen victim to a scam.

According to the FSCS, men (57 per cent) were more likely to think they would not fall victim to a scam compared to women (49 per cent).

The FSCS added that it is alerted “several times a week” to instances of scams that impersonate the FSCS or falsely claim FSCS protection for investments.

“Scams are becoming more commonplace, better coordinated and harder to spot,” commented FSCS CEO, Caroline Rainbird.

“We are helping to tackle scams where we can, for example by monitoring and reporting scams to the financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority, but given the scale of the issue, consumers need to act as the first line of defence.

“By remaining vigilant and asking themselves, is the provider genuine, and is the person they’re…

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