To coincide with the launch of the call blocker dissemination programme, Trading Standards Scotland have published a list of the top ten nuisance calls which have been reported by Scottish consumers since the beginning of the first lockdown in March 2020.
The most common types of scam call being blocked by trueCall units were:
- Misleading sales of insurance for white goods, appliances or SKY equipment (find examples here)
- Misleading sales of boiler, plumbing or drainage cover
- Amazon Prime scams (find examples here)
- Offers to reduce nuisance calls for a fee by signing you up to the Telephone Preference Service
- Bank fraud (find examples here)
- Attempts to gain remote access to your computer or to encourage you to download software, apparently to ‘fix a problem’ (find examples here)
- Misleading calls related to Green Deal funding, grants or insulation (find out more about energy marketing scams here)
- Magazine Subscriptions– nuisance calls asking you to sign up for various magazine subscriptions
- Cold callers trying to sell timeshares. These scams have become more common during the pandemic as people experience issues with travel and accommodation
- Cold callers posing as staff from well-known companies such as Aviva asking about life insurance renewal and attempting to obtain personal details
The aim of the majority of scam and nuisance calls is to obtain people’s personal data and to encourage them to give the caller their bank details. This is often achieved by implying that urgent action is required – a tactic which particularly targets elderly and more vulnerable people.
Find general advice for avoiding phone scams here.
Report scam calls to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or via their ScamWatch tool. If you have been the victim of fraud, report it to Police Scotland on 101.