1 August 2017

Don't rush into anything. Even if it seems like a great offer don't agree immediately. Speak to family and friends or call an advice agency like the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06.

Make sure the company is reputable. Do your research on the seller. Check it's got a contact number and postal address and is a member of a trade association. Financial companies must be authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority. Check their register online or call 0800 111 6768.

Know who's on your doorstep. If you answer the door to someone you don’t know, ask for an identity card and check it. You could phone the company they represent to check who they are. Think about putting up a notice saying you don’t buy on the doorstep. If you’re suspicious or the caller won’t leave, call 999 and ask for the police.

Be wise to cold call scams. Ignore unsolicited invitations such as letters, emails or phone calls offering a brilliant investment or saying you’ve won a lottery. Contact the Mailing Preference Service on 0845 703 4599 to have your name taken off UK direct mailing lists. Check your email account is set up to filter spam.

Be aware of new pension scams. New rules allowing people to access their pension pots from age 55 have brought with them new scams. Be cautious of anyone that claims to know about loopholes, talks about overseas investments or says you can get your money before age 55.

Report it. Don't feel embarrassed or ashamed if it happens to you. Contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 to report it and get help.

Further information