Adviser frustrated by bid to report phishing scam

Adviser frustrated by bid to report phishing scam

A Worcestershire-based adviser has expressed frustration with the authorities’ approach to financial crime after reporting a potential fraudster but seeing no action taken.

Simon Mansell, director of Temple Bar Independent Financial Advice, said his accounts department was contacted by someone claiming to be him and asking for a bank transfer of tens of thousands of pounds.

He replied to the fraudster, pretending to be in the accounts department and was sent bank details, which he passed on to Action Fraud.

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Mr Mansell revealed his attempt to catch a fraudster to FTAdviser after another financial adviser in Yorkshire reported a case of alleged fraud.

According to the most recent figures, there were 52,300 incidents of fraud reported to Action Fraud between October and December 2015.

In the same quarter in the previous year there were 62,300 reported incidents.

Mr Mansell said: “It is a little bit irksome, because you have to do double somersaults in terms of money laundering with people that you have known for years.

“But the moment you contact the powers that be with an example of fraud, it seems to be beyond anybody’s power to deal with it.”

Mr Mansell said he contacted Action Fraud to report the incident, but nothing happened.

He added that after the case was reported, the fraudster sent another email urging him to transfer the money.

“I am not quite sure what I would have expected but bearing in mind we had a fraudster who was there with their head above the parapet you would have thought someone could have interceded and done something,” Mr Mansell said.

“The fraudster did actually follow it up and asked for us to make the transfer as quickly as possible. Apparently it was to do with some sort of trust arrangement and the transfer was required.”

A spokesman for Action Fraud said: “I can confirm that a report was made to Action Fraud on the 17 March.

“As there were no viable lines of enquiry the report was not passed on for further investigation.”

Earlier this month West Yorkshire Police said it was looking for two people in connection with an alleged scam uncovered by financial adviser Neil Liversidge.

Mr Liversidge, managing director of West Yorkshire-based West Riding Personal Financial Solutions, had his suspicions raised when he received an email from a client - a retired headteacher - requesting a transfer “to secure a vital business deal.”