Scams - Financial Conduct Authority


Millions of people fall victim to scams every year, from experienced investors to people dealing with a large sum for the first time. See how to spot and avoid scams – and what to do if you have been ripped-off.

You can also see our list of unauthorised firms and individuals to avoid.

We take action against fraudsters involved in certain scams, usually involving investments or financial products, but we also explain how to protect yourself from some other scams.

Remember: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!

Investment scams

Last Modified: 25/03/2015

Investment scams can look and sound believable, with smooth-talking salespeople, slick websites or sophisticated brochures and prospectuses. This can make it hard to tell them apart from genuine investment opportunities. But there are ways to spot and avoid scams.

How to avoid investment scams

Last Modified: 27/11/2014

Investment scams are designed to look like genuine investments. See the steps you can take to spot and avoid them.

Report a suspected scam

Last Modified: 15/10/2014

Investment scams are difficult to spot: they are designed to appear just like genuine investments. The people that run investment scams are skilled and experienced at persuading their targets to part with their money.

Banking scams

Last Modified: 10/10/2014

Banking is more convenient and efficient now that you can access your accounts online. But this has also given criminals new ways to use your details and even access your bank account, to remove funds from it.

Early pension release

Last Modified: 24/02/2016

Find out how early pension release works and why accessing your pension before you are 55 will cost you most of the money in it.