On 5 December the Government launched a consultation on a package of measures aimed at tackling different areas of pensions scams. One of the measures is a ban on cold calling in relation to pensions.
A cold calling ban would cut off a key source of pension scams whilst also sending a clear message to consumers that they should hang up if they are cold called about their pension. The consultation will gather views on the exact scope of the ban and whether it should be extended to include electronic communications as well. The consultation closes on 13 February 2017 and next steps will be announced at Budget 2017.
The Government takes scams very seriously, and is continuing to monitor the risk of scams in other areas of financial services.
The Government is determined that financial services firms treat customers fairly. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which regulates the insurance industry in the UK, sets the standards required of insurance firms to help ensure customers are treated fairly. Their rules require that communications with consumers should be clear, fair and not misleading. FCA also rules require that financial advertising and promotions should clearly explain what the product or service is, how it works and it could benefit consumers. Misleading adverts can be reported to the FCA online at: http://www.fca.org.uk/consumers/protect-yourself/misleading-adverts/reporting-form.
The FCA will take action against insurers that are found to be in breach of the FCA rules.