I was born at 11.02am on 11th November 1961, according to my star chart ,the sun, the moon, all the houses and for all I know Planet Pluto are in Scorpio, which makes me a little worried.
This is no time for astrological perorations. There are fraudsters about and Lesley Titcomb, the new(ish) Regulator is here to tell us how to stop them.
I am a great admirer of this new approach from the Regulator. Rather than try to stamp on the scorpion, they’re teaching how to stay out of their way. This is not the same as trying to put a cork on the scorpion’s tail – something I’ve tried (and nearly got stung).
Scorpions are about and if you don’t believe me- believe Lesley
There is a simple knack to keeping out of the way of scorpions
Engage – with this blog, this video , this problem
Educate- yourself and others on how to keep out of the way of fraudsters
Empower yourself and others to keep your money close. If you want to know what to do just look at the Pension Regulator’s brand spanking new webpage.
If you don’t do videos, here’s the transcript of Lesley Titcomb’s comments
Q. How do I know it’s a scam?
Well there a number of indicators for example if you’re approaching 55 and you get a cold call on your telephone from somebody offering you a way to access your pension then it’s probably a scam and you should put the phone down. So if somebody tells you that you can access you pension before you reach 55 then it may well be a scam. It’s possible if you’re not very well that you might be able to do so but it’s highly unusual so typically this would also be a scam.
If anyone approaches you claiming to be from the government or from Pension wise or another government body and suggests that they can help you to access your pension then that’s almost certainly a scam.
The other way that scammers can get you is they offer you a free review of your pension or an exciting one off investment opportunity or something called a pensions loan, all of these things are indicators that it could be a scam.
Q. Lesley, how can I protect myself against the scammers?
Well the first thing I would say is don’t get caught so don’t sign anything quickly, think very hard about it, arm yourself with the facts, if you think it might be a scam go to pension-scams.com where there’s a lot of information about this. Other people who can help you are the Pensions Advisory Service or Pension wise both of which can provide guidance and support.
If you have a regulated financial advisor already then you might want to ask them about it.
If you haven’t got one and you want to find a regulated financial advisor then you should go to the FCA website and access their register to check the advisors credentials. The FCA also has a very useful part of its website that lists for consumers some of the current investment scams that are out there where people are being encouraged for example to liberate their pension money from its fund and invest in something exotic.
Many of these situations are scams so you can again arm yourself with the facts by reading about those on the FCA website.
Q. What can trustees do?
Well what trustees can do is two-fold, they can provide information to their members and they can do that in several ways, they can send them our Scorpion leaflet which is a set of leaflets and so one that we’ve produced that are designed for members to inform them about scams.
Or they can direct them to Pension wise or a regulated financial advisor. And the other thing that they can do obviously is be vigilant on behalf of members when they’re asked to make transfers out to other schemes and other forms of investment, and they need to do the necessary checks to make sure that those are bonifide destinations for that money.