Scams awareness month kicked off this week and Consumer Direct is advising people how to tell if friends and relatives are falling victim to scams.
Every year an estimated 3 million people fall victim to scams, losing an average of £850 each.
There are many types of con including bogus foreign lotteries, fake prize draws, fake psychics and pyramid schemes.
Be alert to scams
Although anyone can become a victim, research shows older people are most vulnerable to scammers.
Someone regularly falling for scams may:
• Receive a lot of junk mail
• Receive cheap-looking goods such as jewellery and health products
• Become secretive when asked about their finances
• Receive regular cold calls
They can have a devastating effect on peoples’ lives – victims can lose their life savings or at the very least suffer from ill health.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of a scam then contact Consumer Direct for advice or by calling 08454 04 05 06.
Michele Shambrook, operations manager for Consumer Direct said: ‘The scammers are becoming increasingly clever and sophisticated and it’s all too easy to get taken in.
‘If you think a friend or relative may be falling victim, ask questions, offer reassurance and advice, but try not to criticise as this may do more harm than good.’
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