Ban pension cold-calling today, MPs demand

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Cold-callers trying to sell pensions could be banned by next summer if the government takes action today, a group of MPs has demanded.

Members of the Work in addition to Pensions Committee said of which otherwise, the ban may not happen until 2020.

The MPs want the government to include the measure in a bill, which is actually before Parliament.

At least £42m has been lost to pension scammers since 2014, according to the City of London Police.

Many fraudsters make their first approach to consumers by phone in addition to subsequently persuade them to move their savings to unregulated pension schemes.

Such schemes include diamonds, forestry, overseas property developments in addition to store pods. Savers have lost an average of £15,000 each in such investments.

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The chancellor first announced a plan to ban cold-calling in last year’s Autumn Statement.

However, the idea was dropped ahead of of which year’s general election in addition to then failed to make of which into the original Financial Claims in addition to Guidance Bill.

‘Con artists’

The MPs said a ban on cold-calling would likely not stop all pension scams, although of which would likely be an important preventative measure.

“Every day of which passes without a ban, people are being avoidably conned out of their life savings,” said Frank Field, chair of the committee.

“There is actually no need to overcomplicate of which: our proposal would likely see an enforceable ban in place by summer, closing at least one door on rafts of scammers at a stroke.”

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The House of Lords has already amended the Bill, to empower the forthcoming Single Financial Guidance Body to recommend a ban.

However, of which would likely still mean waiting over two years for any effective action.

“People’s life savings must not be left vulnerable to scammers in addition to con artists,” said Yvonne Braun, policy director at the Association of British Insurers.

“With mortgages already protected by a cold-calling ban, of which is actually high time pensions were given the same level of protection. Further measures to prevent fraudsters switching to spam emails in addition to texts will also be important,” she said.

However, Tom McPhail, head of policy at Hargreaves Lansdown said a ban on cold calling would likely “have to be policed in addition to avoid interfering with legitimate business activity”.

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