The scammers targeting YOU 

According to a study from NatWest1, seven in 10 people have been targeted by scams over the last 12 months. Vulnerabilities brought on by cost-of-living challenges have likely contributed to the high numbers. 

Sadly, 13% of people have fallen prey to such scams, which are growing in both number and sophistication – targeting young and old – no one is immune. 

Avoid, avoid, avoid 

To avoid a scam, you’ve first got to know what you’re looking for. So, here’s a list of the most common scams used over the past year and the proportion of people who were targeted: 

  1. Phishing scams (37%) 

Fake emails or calls from organisations purporting to be from legitimate companies, asking you to provide personal or private data. 

  1. Trusted organisation scams (21%)  

Criminals contact their victims pretending to be trusted organisations such as HMRC, the police or their bank, saying there’s something wrong with their account, they need to pay a fine, or similar. 

  1. Refund scams (13%) 

Similar to the above, but the criminals instead use a potential refund or rebate to tempt victims into sharing personal or banking information. 

Other scams include messages purporting to be from friends/family asking for money (12%), get rich quick scams (12%) and purchase scams (9%). 

Keep yourself (and your money) safe  

Staying vigilant and keeping your guard up around unsolicited calls and messages is key to protecting yourself from scams. Remember: 

• If something seems too good to be true, it probably is 

• Your bank will never ask you to disclose your full PIN or password 

• Don’t respond to unsolicited calls, emails or texts, or open links if you feel suspicious 

• We’re always here to help if you’re ever unsure about something. 

Always be alert to the risk of fraud – double check any details to ensure people or organisations are who you think they are. 

Stay vigilant, protect yourself – knowledge is power. 

1NatWest, 2023 

The value of investments can go down as well as up and you may not get back the full amount you invested. The past is not a guide to future performance and past performance may not necessarily be repeated.