Scams are created to trick you into handing over money or personal details. They can be targeted at businesses or individuals.
As well as leaving people out of pocket, it is estimated that £5 billion to £10 billion is lost to scams each year in the UK. Scams may occur through phone calls, letters, emails, the internet or at your door.
To find out more about scams:
- Citizens Advice has information about common consumer scams to look out for
- Business Companion has advice on how to spot and avoid scams targeting businesses
Victims are often left feeling a sense of shame and social isolation, but don't feel embarrassed as it can happen to anyone.
How to spot a scam
- contact you out of the blue
- ask for personal or financial details
- put you under pressure to respond quickly
- ask you to keep their offer a secret
- make promises that sound too good to be true
- verify their identity
- look out for grammatical or spelling mistakes
- never give out your bank details
- never send money to someone you don’t know
- say no to persuasive sales talk
Take a Stand Against Scams
Friends Against Scams is a campaign which aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams by empowering communities to 'Take a Stand Against Scams'.
Scams affect the lives of millions of people across the UK. People who are scammed often experience loneliness, shame and social isolation.
The aim of Friends Against Scams (a National Trading Standards Scams Team initiative) is to:
- inspire action
- highlight the scale of the problem
- change the perceptions of why people fall victim to scams
- make scams a local, regional and national topic
By completing the online learning (which takes approximately 20 minutes), anyone can learn about the different types of scams and how to spot and support a victim.
With increased knowledge and awareness, people can make scams part of everyday conversation with their family, friends and neighbours, which will enable them to protect themselves and others.