Simoney Kyriakou  

You reap what you sow

Simoney Kyriakou

Simoney Kyriakou

‘Do as you would be done by; be done by as you did’. We have started to see this idiom in action in this ‘flatten-the-coronavirus-curve’ lockdown, now the panic buyers have stopped stripping the shelves.

Social media is replete with stories of people going the extra mile for friends, family, neighbours and even strangers.

Grace is visibly at work in the actions of ordinary men and women. 

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It seems the horror we expressed at the selfish actions of a few as the Covid-19 virus hit the headlines has spurred thousands of decent people into positive proactivity.

The same sort of community spirit has been invoked across the financial advice industry, as support services, advisers small and large, and wealth management groups put together resources to help advisers during the lockdown.

But the support is not just staying within an ivory tower: it’s extending towards clients and beyond.

One financial adviser — I won’t name him, because he would be embarrassed — offered to check in on a colleague’s elderly mother, who lives in Devon and hundreds of miles away from my colleague. 

That is exemplary and should show what we already knew: advisers are working in the very best interests of others. 

It is with great regret, therefore, that we have to reveal the scope of scams operating in this pandemic. 

Pension scammers preying on the elderly simply because they know these people will be isolated at home.

Tax scammers pretending to be from HM Revenue & Customs, using publicly available records to con them into handing over their money, or luring them into dodgy tax-avoidance vehicles. 

Investment fraudsters, maliciously targeting people who are understandably worried as markets have crumbled. 

Such people think only of themselves and care nothing for others.

You have a right to be angry. You have a right to seek justice for your clients and prospective clients.

So if you see anything suspicious, call it out. They will not prevail.

Simoney Kyriakou is editor of Financial Adviser