Morrison insurance Solutions

How to spot a scam?

The definition of ‘scam’ is a scheme, or trick, performed by a dishonest individual or group in an attempt to obtain money or something else of value. They can arrive by post, phone call, text message or email or a scammer may turn up at your home. As the scammers are getting more intelligent we look at how you can spot a scam and what you can do if you think you have been a victim.

How to spot a scam?

It could be a scam if:

bullet-arror.gifYou are contacted out of the blue and you are not sure how they got your contact details.

bullet-arror.gifThe deal is too good to be true, scams will often promise high returns for very little financial commitment.

bullet-arror.gifYou are asked to share personal details, such as, your bank account details, full name and address.

bullet-arror.gifYou are pressurised to respond quickly, scammers will try to hurry your decision making and pressure you into a sale, always take a breath and think things through.

bullet-arror.gifIf their contact details are vague, such as a PO Box number, mobile number or a premium rate number (starting in ’09’).

bullet-arror.gifThere are grammatical errors or spelling mistakes, scammers often use bad grammar and spelling to ensure only the most vulnerable people will respond to their messages.

bullet-arror.gifIf you are asked to keep it quiet, often asking you to stay silent is used to keep you away from the advice and support you need in making a decision.

bullet-arror.gifYou are asked to send money in advance, for example, they'll ask you to pay a fee before you can claim a prize.

bullet-arror.gifIf the caller is being over-familiar and over-friendly with you.

What are the next steps?

Reporting scams is easy, and it could help other people out in the future as the accounts, phone numbers, and letters can be blocked. 

How can you report them?

bullet-arror.gifIf you have spotted a scam email you can report it to the internet service provider (ISP) that was used to send you the email. Once you have done this the ISP can close the account. 

bullet-arror.gifYou can report the matter to the company or body being mimicked such as the bank, government department or other company cited in the scam. Companies can then warn their customers of mimicking scams by putting notices on their websites. 

bullet-arror.gifIf you want to complain about or report a premium-rate telephone service scam, contact PhonepayPlus. This is the official organisation set up to regulate phone-paid services in the UK. You can call PhonepayPlus free from a landline on:                      0300 30 300 20, or visit the PhonepayPlus website.

bullet-arror.gifIf you do receive correspondence you believe to be from fraudsters, you can forward it to Royal Mail with a covering letter to Freepost, Scam Mail, PO Box 797, Exeter, EX1 9UN. You can also email or call:                              03456 113 413. 

bullet-arror.gifThe Mailing Preference Service (MPS) allows you to have your name and address removed from mailing lists. To register for the free service, call 0845 703 4599 or visit 

bullet-arror.gifIf you think you have been a victim of a scam, you can report it to Action Fraud

For more information, have a look at the Metropolitan Police's 'The Little Book of Big Scams'.

What has this got to do with insurance?

By being vigilant and taking precautions you can avoid claiming for fraud on your insurance. If you would like to discuss this further or talk about policies where we can cover you for fraud, give us a call on 01789 761 670.

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