1. ITV Report

Rise of people being scammed in Scotland

In the last year the number of scams reported to this helpline was up by 14% (from 1,429 the previous year, to 1,631). Photo: PA

More people are falling victim to scams in Scotland, according to figures published by Citizens Advice Scotland.

A helpline set up by Citizens Advice Scotland to deal with consumer issues had a 14% increase in calls about scams, especially ‘love scams’ on dating websites.

The service is urging people to continue reporting scams and that they can offer help to those who have been scammed.

The report found that:

  • The two fastest growing types of scam over the last year, judging by calls to out helpline,are ‘love scams’ (e.g. on dating websites) and fake government scams (bogus websites claiming to be the government
  • 30 Scots report a scam tothe CAS consumer phoneline every working week
  • Contrary to the common belief that older people are the most likely to be duped, the age group most vulnerable to becoming repeat victims are 31 to 40 year olds.
  • Scammers often share info on vulnerable people. Between 10 and 20% of the population are thought to be at risk of being on this ‘suckers list’.
  • 64% of all emails sent is spam, and one in every 350 emails contains a virus
This is one of the 1,200 scam websites that targeted Christmas shoppers in 2009 Credit: PA

The Scottish Citizens Advice service is working with Police Scotland and Trading Standards to help people fight against scams and fraud. They recommend that people keep in mind these 5 rules:

  • Be sceptical about offers that seem ‘too good to be true’
  • Take your time and don’t be harassed into making quick decisions.
  • Always make sure you know who you’re dealing with. If you are unsure,check.
  • Protect your financial information and do not give it out unless you are100% sure you know who you are dealing with.
  • If you are victim of a scam, report it.

The Citizen Advice Scotland website can be found here.