Greater powers needed to tackle the growing problem of pension scams
New research by The People’s Pension and the Police Foundation shows urgent and decisive action must be taken by the police, government and pensions industry to stop scammers stealing people’s life savings.
As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to cause a rise in pension fraud, our new report, Protecting people’s pensions: understanding and preventing pension scams, has found that from 13 pension providers alone, almost 1,000 customers with combined savings of £54 million were targeted by scammers in 2019.
While fraud has always been a feature of pensions, following pension freedoms in 2014 and a further relaxation of rules in 2015, there has been growth in different kinds of scams, leaving pension pots more vulnerable.
The People’s Pension and the Police Foundation are calling on the government to:
- ensure victims of pension fraud are not hit with tax penalties as is currently the case
- give pension companies the power to trigger an urgent regulatory response to savers at risk of fraud
- enable regulators to override the statutory right to transfer should a suspected scam be reported to them.