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Online scams come in many forms, and through different channels. Advances in technology have enabled scammers to become increasingly sophisticated in their online methods. For example, some copycat websites can look like official government sites, with the result that people pay more for services (e.g. renewing a passport or driving licence). Phishing emails can trick individuals into giving out their personal bank details.

Although anyone can fall for a scam, vulnerable people (such as the elderly and those with learning difficulties or dementia) are especially susceptible. All scams should be reported to Action Fraud and to Trading Standards (via the Citizens Advice online portal). However, many scams go unreported due to the victim’s embarrassment or shame.

This Westminster Hall Debate is predominantly concerned with online scams, but the following Library’s briefing paper may also be of interest:


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