Which? launches super-complaint to help property buyers who are victims of scams

Posted: 29/9/2016

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Home buyers who are scammed by fraudsters posing as estate agents or conveyancers into parting with their purchase money are part of the focus of a super-complaint made by Which?

The consumer organisation says that at the moment, no one falling victim to a bank transfer scam has a legal right to get their money back from a bank.

Which? wants banks to offer the same protection that credit card fraud victims receive.

Which? is making a super-complaint to the Payment Systems Regulator and alerting the Financial Conduct Authority. The regulators have 90 days to investigate and respond.

Which? is calling on regulators to investigate the scale of bank transfer fraud and how much it is costing consumers.

Which? research found that six in ten people had no idea they had no consumer protection from their bank if they were scammed into making a bank transfer.

Christopher Mills, from York, was tricked into sending a £10,000 deposit for his new home to a fraudster after receiving an email that appeared to be from his estate agent.

In the case, highlighted on BBC News, his bank refused to cover the loss.

Mills said: “It is just like being burgled at home; something is missing and you can’t get it back.

“The scammer was so clever in that the first email had exactly the same details that came from the estate agent.”

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