Aviva has launched an online scam reporting service in response to the influx of fraudulent activity by those exploiting the coronavirus crisis and people’s vulnerability at this time.
The tool, launched today (May 12), will allow people to report suspected fraud in order to receive personal guidance on what action they should take.
The service can be accessed via Aviva’s new Fraud Hub on its website.
It allows people to report any suspicious contact which appears to be from Aviva, whether it be by person, post, email, call or text - particularly those which relate to insurance, savings and retirement products.
Aviva’s financial crime intelligence unit will investigate every incident that is reported and will give guidance to individuals about what they should do.
Matt Chapman, group fraud risk director at Aviva, said: “We believe we have a responsibility to work in partnership with the industry to protect people from financial crime – particularly where the Aviva brand name is being used without our consent.
“We’re adapting and utilising our existing operations, experience and skills to protect people, and their money, at a time when they are arguably more vulnerable than ever.
He added: “The types of financial scams and misleading consumer advice we’re seeing right now are not much different to those we see at any other time.
"Sadly though, it’s during this difficult time that fraudsters are using coronavirus to take advantage of unprecedented levels of consumer fears over money. The industry needs to work together to support each other and our customers.”
The launch of the service comes at a time when there has been a significant increase in the number of scams as fraudsters look to exploit the ongoing coronavirus crisis and lockdown.
According to Action Fraud, there was a 400 per cent increase in coronavirus-related fraud reports from February to March as opportunistic scammers attempt to exploit savers experiencing serious financial strain and looking to access their savings.
Research from the All-Party Parliamentary Group on pension scams showed that with more people staying at home, in line with social distancing and lockdown restrictions, it’s much more likely that pension savers will be contacted by scammers via phone or online.
In response, The Pensions Regulator, Financial Conduct Authority and Money and Pensions Service issued a joint statement urging people not to make rash decisions with their pensions in the wake of the pandemic.
Earlier this year FTAdviser carried out its own investigation into how these fraudsters operate.
Read our investigative piece: How the pension scammers are getting away with it
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