Almost one in ten pensioners have been targeted by scammers during their retirement, new research suggests.
An online study of over 1,000 retired people conducted by MetLife reveals 9 per cent have been targeted by pension fraudsters since they stopped working.
The scams range from attempting to trick older people to part with their bank details to selling dodgy investments and pension schemes.
People in the South West are most likely to be targeted, according to the survey, while Eastern regions reported significantly lower levels of fraudulent activity (see table).
MetLife UK managing director Dominic Grinstead says: “Pension flexibility offers the UK the chance to create a world-leading retirement saving system and to ensure that people have more comfortable retirements.
“Unfortunately it is also providing opportunities for fraudsters who already see retired people as potential targets as shown by the fact that so many have been subjected to scams.
“Independent advice on retirement options can help people become better informed and more able to see through fraudsters.”
The research comes after HMRC announced it was tightening regulations for pension scheme adminstrators from April this year as part of its clampdown on pension scams.
Despite this, fears remain that reforms coming into force in less than two months’ time will provide a fertile environment for pension fraudsters as savers are granted unprecedented freedom over how they spend their savings post age 55.