Trading Standards Scotland has published a list of the top ten nuisance calls reported by Scottish consumers between October and December 2021.

The most problematic calls during the quarter were related to green deal funding, with the majority of calls relating to surveys about home insulation and the apparent availability of government grants for energy efficient improvements. The increase in these types of calls is likely to be a result of Government announcements regarding the need for improved energy efficiency measures and the COP26 summit which was held in November 2021.

The most common types of scam call being blocked by trueCall units were:

  • Green Deal scams – misleading calls related to loft insulation or funding for energy efficiency measures (Read more here)
  • Remote access scams – calls purportedly from Microsoft asking for remote access to your computer due to apparent issues such as viruses or software malfunctions (Read more here)
  • Misleading telesales – cold calls attempting to sell insurance for white goods, TVs, boilers or other appliances (Read more here)
  • Broadband issues– scam calls purportedly from BT or Virgin saying that there are issues with your broadband and that it will be cut off unless you pay a fee (Read more here)
  • Amazon Prime scams – cold calls saying that your subscription is due for renewal or that there are issues with your account (Read more here)
  • Postcode Lottery scams – cold calls saying that you have won a prize, vouchers or a holiday, where the caller asks for your personal details
  • Banking scams – cold calls purportedly from your bank claiming that there has been fraudulent activity on your account (Read more here)
  • SKY scams – cold calls saying that your SKY box needs to be replaced and asking for your bank details
  • Lead generation – Cold callers carrying out surveys in order to gather your information, which can then be passed on to other companies
  • Accident claims – cold calls claiming that you are due compensation after a recent accident

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.

Trading Standards Scotland have published a PDF with information about common scam calls and how to avoid them. The PDF can also be printed out for those who are not online and may be of use to vulnerable friends or relatives who are bothered by scam calls.
View the PDF online and download it here.

Report scam calls to Advice Direct Scotland on 0808 164 6000 or via their website. If you have been the victim of fraud, report it to Police Scotland on 101.