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    Home / Are you a ScamSmart Investor?

    Are you a ScamSmart Investor?

    Our professional adviser service helps you provide pensions and pension-planning expertise to your clients, bridging the gap of knowledge in this highly technical subject.

    Wealth Management

    Avoid scams

    There has been a significant increase in the use of emails, texts and social media for keeping clients in touch with their finances and investments and this has led to an increase in criminal activity by investment scammers.

    Most recently, investment scammers are targeting consumers looking for investments online. You should seriously consider seeking financial advice or guidance before investing, and make sure any firm you deal with is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Never take investment advice from the company that contacted you, as this may be part of the scam.

    The FCA ScamSmart campaign brings together a range of resources and information to help you to avoid scams. We urge all clients to access the FCA’s campaign in order to protect themselves and their family. You can also keep updated with the latest ScamSmart news on Facebook (#fcascamsmart).

    We have summarised ScamSmart’s four main steps to avoiding scams below.

    Be a ScamSmart investor


    Reject unexpected offers

    If you are contacted out of the blue, and/or the offer seems too good to be true, it is probably a scam.


    Check who you are dealing with

    Search the FCA’s Warning List of firms who are known to be operating without permission or running scams.

    Even if it’s not on the warning list, you can check the firm is authorised on the Financial Services Register.


    Don’t be rushed or pressured

    Take your time to make all the checks you need regardless of any high pressure selling tactics – as the saying goes, “It’s better to be safe than sorry”.


    Seek advice

    Mattioli Woods offers a comprehensive advisory and investment service, details of which can be found here. Even if you do not currently have an advisory relationship, should you need to discuss your wealth management strategy or investments, please email us at You can also find free public guidance through organisations such as the Pensions Advisory ServicePension Wise and the Money Advice Service.

    Junior ISAs

    What to do if you think you have been scammed?

    Report to the FCA – you can report an unauthorised firm or scam to the FCA by contacting the Consumer Helpline on 0800 111 6768 or using the reporting form.

    Report to Action Fraud online or by calling 0300 123 2040.
    If you have agreed to transfer your pension and now suspect a scam, contact
    Mattioli Woods straight away.

    If you have already invested in a scam, fraudsters are likely to target you again or sell your details to other criminals. The follow-up scam may be completely separate or related to the previous fraud, such as an offer to get your money back or to buy back the investment after you pay a fee.

    ScamSmart is a Financial Conduct Authority campaign, you can learn more here.


    Investment Scams

    Try the FCA’s scamsmart game to see if you can spot the signs of a scam.

    Find out more

    Pension Scams

    The FCA has devised a quiz to help pension savers test if they could spot a scam. Test yourself now.

    Find out more

    Action Fraud

    Action Fraud is the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and cybercrime where you should report fraud if you have been scammed, defrauded or experienced cyber crime in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

    Find out more

    Take Five

    Take Five is a national campaign offering straight-forward, impartial advice that helps prevent email, phone-based and online fraud – particularly where criminals impersonate trusted organisations

    Find out more

    Money Advice Service

    MoneyHelper helps to make your money and pension choices clearer and explains what you need to do and how you can do it. They help to put you in control with free, impartial guidance that’s backed by government, and to recommend further, trusted support if you need it.

    Find out more

    Scam-savvy quiz

    An online quiz to test if you can recognize a scam and to help create awareness.

    Find out more