Cold calls, high-pressure sales tactics and automated voicemails asking for people’s details are just some of the tricks scammers are using to rob people of their hard earned money, says Citizens Advice and Suffolk Trading Standards.
The organisations are launching Scams Awareness Month on 1 July to help stop people falling prey to scams by following a three-step rule – get advice, report it, and tell others about it.
Fraud victims pay a heavy price, losing billions of pounds every year. Scams targeting people by phone or post alone cost people in the UK an estimated UK £5 billion each year.
Ipswich Citizens Advice will be out and about in the town centre over the coming month helping people gain the skills to stop scams in their tracks, by taking logical steps to learn how to spot a scam, however it is presented.
At our stalls, people will learn the tell-tale signs of fraud, from being made an offer that’s too good to be true, to being rushed into signing on the dotted line.
Informing the authorities and warning others is the only sure fire way of stopping scams, but people can be hesitant to even tell their friends and family.
Ipswich Citizens Advice volunteers will also show how speaking up about a scam is key to getting them closed down, and how to go about reporting suspected fraud to the authorities.
Nicky Willshere, Chief Executive of Ipswich Citizens Advice said:
Scams come in a variety of guises and we see new ones emerging all the time.
However, there are common hallmarks to every scam and we’re keen to show people what to look out for so they don’t fall prey to a fraudster.
Reporting suspicious offers and incidents of fraud is vital to getting scams closed down. If you think you’ve been contacted by a con artist or have been the victim of scam, seek advice and report it to the authorities.
Lesley Crompton, Scams Lead Officer from Suffolk Trading Standards said:
Scams are more common than most people realise and every day we hear from people who have lost money to a con-artist.
Some scams are one-offs that persuade you to part with a lump sum, while others go after your personal details so they can access your money or copy your identity.
We’re asking people to help us tackle scams throughout Suffolk by getting to know the common signs, warning others, and reporting incidents to us so we can investigate.
Come and visit us at our stalls in the town centre.