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PPi claims are being made by thousands of people every day in the UK. After it was revealed last year that £millions worth of payment protection insurance had been mis-sold to millions of unsuspecting customers, the FSA ruled that the offending financial institutions would have to pay back premiums in full.

The FSA also ruled recently that the offending banks would have to lay out guidelines of how people could reclaim the premiums and contact customers directly, who may have been involved. However, many people are still unaware that they had even paid premiums for a policy they didn’t know they had bought.

As such, a number of independent PPI claims companies have been set up to help people reclaim the cash, which has caused backlash in the financial industry, because these companies are making money from a service that could be sought for free directly from the bank. However, the claims companies argue that they help people who don’t even know they can make a claim to get back the money that is rightfully theirs.

Now, a new problem has arisen, whereby bogus claims companies are encouraging people to make claims, and steal money from them in the process.

It was announced by police in the Cheshire area that a number of people have fallen victim to the scam and £1,000s has been stolen. Cold callers target the victims, requesting that they allow the company to enquire about making a PPI claim. Several weeks later, the company calls back and tell the unsuspecting person that a successful claim has been made, and in order to receive it they must purchase UKash vouchers.

These vouchers can be bought in shops and post offices and are used to buy goods online. The scammer takes the code from the voucher and is able to use it, whilst the victim doesn’t receive a penny from the bogus PPI claim.

It is thought that the scammers are primarily targeting elderly people in the Cheshire area, and police are urging people to remain vigilant and not to give any details to strangers over the phone. People are also being urged to look out for elderly people and ensure they aren’t falling victim to this awful crime.

PCSO Melissa Mellor commented:

“We would ask that anyone who receives a call of this nature, or who believes they may have been a victim, contact police as soon as possible via the non-emergency number, 101.”

This post was written by Graham Jones, who is a PPI claims expert from the UK. Graham is a frequent finance blogger and loves to travel.