Stay safe during Brexit

It’s worth reminding yourself of the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) advice regarding staying safe from scams taking advantage of Brexit.

On leaving the EU, because most UK financial services regulation is drawn from EU directives, the government requires financial services companies to proactively contact anyone likely to be affected. For example, transfers of money to Europe or paying for a purchase in euros could take longer. Any disruption during this time could present a perfect opportunity for scammers, who may contact people pretending to be from their bank, insurer or other financial services provider.

Top tips

  • Beware of all unexpected calls, emails and text messages
  • A genuine bank or organisation will not ask for your PIN, full password or to move money to another account
  • Never give out your personal or financial details unless it’s for a service you want to use and where you trust the provider
  • Don’t be pressured into acting quickly – a genuine bank or financial services firm won’t mind giving you time to think
  • Always double-check the web link and company contact details in case it’s a ‘clone firm’ pretending to be a real firm
  • If you get an email, expand the pane at the top of the message and see exactly who it has come from – if it’s a scam, the email address of the sender may be filled with random numbers or be misspelled
  • Beware that fraudsters can ’clone’ real email addresses to make their emails seem genuine

If you have any doubts about what you are being asked to do, don’t respond to the message or click on any links. Check with your provider using contact details you can trust, for example the phone number on your bank statement or policy documentation. You can also ask your adviser to verify that the message you received is genuine.

ScamSmart

Don’t forget, the FCA’s ScamSmart website is a reassuring way of checking an investment or pension opportunity you’ve been offered and avoiding scams. For more information read the FCA pension scams leaflet, or find out more at www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart

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