Scams and fraudsters
Fraud attempts can often involve a criminal trying to impersonate someone who works for a trusted organisation, such as FSCS, to get your personal financial details.
It's completely free to make a claim through FSCS – we will never ask you for money.
There are many signs of fraud, some more obvious than others. Most commonly they will involve:
- A cold call.
- A mention of 'guaranteed returns'.
- A request for an upfront payment.
- An email address that is filled with random numbers or is misspelt.
- A company that is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Check the FCA's register here.
3 March 2022 – Araminta Ratliff email scam
We have been made aware of an email sent from “Mrs. Araminta Ratliff” which claims to be from FSCS. The address used ends with '@fscsclaimunit.co.uk' and the email offers to make a payment in US Dollars (USD$) for “PART PAYMENT funds” if you complete and return a payment registration form. We can confirm that this email has not come from FSCS – please do not give out any financial information. You can contact us to be sure you are dealing with the real FSCS.
2 February 2022 - Verena Black German email scam
A spate of emails from "Verena Black" claiming to be from FSCS and offering compensation is in circulation and has been since autumn 2021. Do not respond to them! Email us to be safe: email@example.com
8 June 2021 - Consumers from Saudi Arabia should beware of letters appearing to be from FSCS and offering to release a compensation payment once taxes are paid. FSCS does not charge consumers nor require tax payments, deal in foreign currency nor is actively reaching out to Saudi nationals. You can contact us to be sure you are dealing with the real FSCS.
Beware of emails from “Dr. Colin Clarke”, using a spoofed version of the address firstname.lastname@example.org and a US phone number, and saying that you are entitled to compensation. This identity is fake.
4 June 2021 - AJK and European-language scammers selling fake FSCS compensation. Beware of fake or cloned firms trying to sell you FSCS compensation to recover "lost" investments. Recent UK scams include a firm called AJK – see the FCA's warning.
European customers are being targeted in Italian and other languages by fake personas such as "Johnatan Narracci" and "Laura Cruder". Don’t hesitate to contact us before signing any contract or handing over any money to a firm regarding FSCS compensation.
13 May 2021 - Beware of contact or documents from “Elisabeth Schlepphorst”, “Ronnie Johnson”, “Monica Gonzalez” or other Italian-speaking scammers claiming to be from FSCS and offering you compensation! Email us to be safe: email@example.com
Fai attenzione ai contatti o ai documenti di "Elisabeth Schlepphorst", "Ronnie Johnson", "Monica Gonzalez" o altri truffatori di lingua italiana che affermano di provenire da FSCS e ti offrono un risarcimento! Scrivici per sicurezza: firstname.lastname@example.org
19 April 2021 - Fake FSCS decision letters – If you’ve received an unexpected letter saying you will be sent compensation from FSCS, please check with us. Scammers are sending out fake FSCS decision letters using fictitious or cloned company names (e.g. Hazel Holdings) and offering compensation regarding firms and/or investments not protected by FSCS. Signs to look for include missing claim reference numbers, incorrect dates, and sloppy formatting.
5 March 2021 - Beware of contact from "Maria Pettersson" or other German-speaking scammers claiming to be from FSCS and offering you compensation! Email us to be safe: email@example.com
Hüten Sie sich vor Kontakten von "Maria Pettersson" oder anderen deutschsprachigen Betrügern, die behaupten, von FSCS zu stammen und Ihnen eine Entschädigung anbieten! Mailen Sie uns, um sicher zu gehen: firstname.lastname@example.org
15 January 2021 - GPG investors targetted by scammers
What can you do to protect yourself from scams?
If you are concerned that an investment or pension is a scam, you can check the details of the investment and whether the provider is genuine on the FCA's website.
UK Finance and the Metropolitan Police have produced the Little Booklet of Investment Scams (PDF 1,105 kb) which gives useful advice on how to protect yourself from investment scams.
Metropolitan Police videos
The Metropolitan Police has produced a series of videos on how to stay safe while using online services, and the sort of scams criminals use.
Click the 'Play' button to watch the scams video, or go to the Metropolitan Police site to watch the full set of videos.
How scammers have used FSCS in the past
Here are some examples of how scammers have mentioned FSCS in order to make themselves seem legitimate:
- A fake website which claimed to represent FSCS and asked people to register a claim.
- An email scam which promised a high-value payment from FSCS. The scammers used the reference SRF064 and promised a $5.7m payment and tried to entice people to provide personal information.
- An email asking for a fee for FSCS services.
If you’re suspicious about any email, text message or phone call from someone claiming to be from FSCS, please don't give out any personal financial information.
Emails with a different ending such as @zoho.com are not from FSCS.
Official FSCS emails end with @fscs.org.uk. However, it is possible for scammers to make it look like they have an official FSCS email address, so you should still be careful even if the email address ends in @fscs.org.uk.
If in doubt, contact us by email or phone.
What to do if you think you've been a victim of fraud
- If you have given out your information and suspect fraud, contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.
- To let us know about a suspected fraud involving FSCS, please contact us.
Learn more about other financial scams that could affect you.