Coronavirus-related fraud causes losses of £970k

Hannah Godfrey reports...

Almost £1m of coronavirus-related fraud has been reported to Action Fraud, according to the national crime and fraud reporting centre.

There have been 105 cases of Covid-19-related fraud cases reported to Action Fraud since February 1 2020, and total losses of around £970,000.

The first coronavirus report was received by Action Fraud on 9 February, which was followed by 20 more reports that month. Since then there have been 46 reports between the 1 March and 13 March, and 38 reports between 14 March and 18 March.

According to AJ Bell, those facing employment uncertainty are likely to be targeted with ‘early access’ pension offers.

AJ Bell senior analyst Tom Selby said: “While the country hunkers down in the hope of slowing the spread of coronavirus, the economic fallout will inevitably lead to an increase in the number of vulnerable or potentially vulnerable people in the UK.

“In such an environment unscrupulous scammers will already be plotting ways to take advantage during what for many will be a time of serious financial strain.”

According to UK Finance more than £1bn was lost to fraud in 2018.