Financial ombudsman warns consumers of attempted scam

Ger Deering urges vigilance after his office is impersonated on phone calls

Financial services and pensions ombudsman Ger Deering has warned of a phone scam. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Financial services and pensions ombudsman Ger Deering has warned of a phone scam. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

 

The Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman (FSPO), Ger Deering, issued a warning on Sunday to consumers to be vigilant following reports of a scam to the organisation in recent days.

The FSPO has been informed that phone calls have been made, from what appears like a Dublin-based landline, by an individual, or individuals, who claim to be calling from the “Financial Ombudsman”.

The person making the calls claims that they are arranging refunds of €3,000 for consumers from their bank. These calls also claim that the refunds are as a result of “bank overcharging”.

This is a scam and the individual has no connection whatsoever with the FSPO, the authority said.

The FSPO has reported this scam activity to An Garda Síochána. Anyone who receives a call of this nature should not engage with the call and should report this activity to their local Garda station, the FSPO said.

Early warnings

“Scams are unfortunately a regular occurrence and attempts by these fraudsters to connect themselves to my office could lead some consumers to believe that this is genuine. Consumers may be aware that I can direct a financial service provider to pay compensation to a consumer following the investigation of a complaint. However, in such circumstances, compensation is paid by the provider in question directly to the consumer and not through the FSPO,” said Mr Deering.

“Early warnings are important in disrupting scams. We have published a warning on our website and we are raising awareness about this activity. We will continue to keep our website updated.”