Companies will no longer be able to make unsolicited calls to people about their pensions. Those which break the rules could face enforcement action from the Information Commissioner’s Office, including fines of up to £500,000.
The ban covers all cold-calling relating to pensions, including from legitimate firms, but it’s intended to target fraudsters. The Government says cold-calling is one of the most common methods used by pension scammers, and research from the Money Advice Trust suggests there could be as many as 250 million scam calls per year.
Victims of pension scams can be left with no money for their retirement. According to the financial regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), victims of pensions scams lost an average of £91,000 each last year.
The Government mooted a ban in 2016, and confirmed it would press ahead with its plans in this year’s Budget. Treasury minister John Glen announced the ban would go ahead last month. MoneySavingExpert has supported plans for a ban, with founder Martin Lewis backing a petition in 2016 which stated a ban “would dramatically reduce the number of people falling prey to fraudsters and losing their savings and pensions”.
Stop scam calls and mail using our Stop Cold Callers guide.