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Concerned about someone being scammed?

If you’re worried that a relative or loved one could be vulnerable to scams, talk to them about protecting themselves and the common scams to look out for.
1 min read
In this article
Warning signs to look out for Safeguarding your loved one

Warning signs to look out for

If you think that your loved one has already been targeted by scammers, use our advice to help them take the appropriate action. Look out for these warning signs:

  • they have unusual amounts of post or letters lying about the house
  • there is evidence of large unexplained cash withdrawals or cheque payments
  • they seem short of money, when they shouldn’t be
  • they seem to get a lot of phone calls from strangers or companies
  • they seem anxious or upset for no apparent reason.

Some scam victims don’t believe they are being scammed. Your loved one might believe this person is their friend or that they’re just about to win a big prize.


Things can be even more difficult if the person you’re supporting has dementia. They might find it harder to say ‘no’ to salespeople, be more likely to believe strangers or not realise what’s happening. If your loved one has dementia, you might find our article on talking to someone with dementia helpful.

Safeguarding your loved one

If someone you know is receiving care from their local authority and you think they're being scammed, it’s worth reporting your concerns to the Adult Safeguarding team. They can investigate situations where an older person may be at risk of abuse, including financial abuse caused by a scam. Use this gov.uk page to find your local authority's website.

Further reading

Scams aimed at older people

Read our guide on common scams and how to identify them. Plus, share it with relatives and friends, to help them keep ...

How to spot a scam

Spotting a scam isn’t always easy, but scammers tend to use some common tactics, which can give them away. Read our ...

Common phone scams

Here are some common phone scams to be aware of – remember to trust your instinct if something doesn’t feel right.

Last updated: 18 Sep 2018