Cold calls, high-pressure sales tactics and automated voicemails asking for people’s details are just some of the tricks scammers are using to rob people of their hard earned money.

Citizens Advice has launched Scams Awareness Month on 1 July to help stop people falling prey to scams. Fraud victims pay a heavy price, losing billions of pounds every year. Scams targeting people by phone or post alone cost people in the UK an estimated UK £5 billion each year.

Manager Kate Bennett said: “Scams are more common than most people realise and we frequently hear from people who have either lost money to a con-artist or who on the verge of falling victim to scam.

“Some scams are one-offs that persuade you to part with a lump sum, while others go after your personal details so they can access your money or copy your identity.  We particularly concerned that fraudsters are increasingly targeting consumers over the phone, posing as bank staff, police officers and other officials or companies in a position of trust. A common tactic is to claim that there has been fraud on your account and that you need to take action and these are increasingly scams used to elicit money from older vulnerable individuals “

It is important to remember that your bank, the police or someone claiming to be from Citizens Advice will never do the following:

•Phone you and ask for your 4 digit pin or on-line password, even by tapping them into a keypad.

•Ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them for safekeeping

•Ask you to transfer money to a new account for fraud reasons even if they says it is in your name.

•Send someone to your home to collect your cash, PIN, payment card if you are a victim of fraud

•Ask you to purchase goods using your card using and then hand them over for safekeeping

If you suspect a scam or have lost money because of one:

Get Advice: The Citizens Advice Consumer Service 03454 04 05 06 or your local office can provide advice and pass details onto trading standards

Report scams or suspected scams to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 www.actionfraud.police.uk

Tell – a friend, neighbour or relative about any scams you become aware of.

Let Citizens Advice know:: 03444 111 444