How to avoid pension scams

Pension scams remain high despite efforts to tackle scammers. Unfortunately for those who fall victim to a scam, there is very little chance of getting the money back, so in this article we have identified some red flags that should alert you to the possibility that you’re being targeted. 

Some good news is that scammers will find it almost impossible to break-in your savings without some active involvement on your part. 

One of the most frequent fraud scenarios involves being persuaded to transfer your pension fund to a new provider – which ends up in the scammer’s hands.  However, please be aware that your exiting provider will not make such transfer unless you make an explicit request to do so. 


Red flags to watch out for: 

  1. Unsolicited approach – either by phone, text, email or in person
  2. Adverts or advisers promising unrealistic rates of return or unusual investments, as well as those that claim to have found legal or tax loopholes that could help you
  3. Any firms that try to rush you into making a decision


What should you do: 

  1. Seek authorised financial advice before making any pension decisions
  2. Check out MoneyHelper – the government-backed service that provides free, independent information and guidance 
  3. Deal only with firms authorised to advise on pensions by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)


And remember, if it is too good to be true it probably is!