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Owed a refund from Thomas Cook? Stay alert as opportunistic fraudsters are targeting would-be holidaymakers in a new scam. 

Thomas Cook scams - what to watch out for

Owed a refund from Thomas Cook? Stay alert as opportunistic fraudsters are targeting would-be holidaymakers in a new scam. 

It doesn’t take long for scam artists to take advantage of situations where consumers might be feeling unsure. Unsurprisingly, they already have their sights set on people affected by the liquidation of Thomas Cook earlier this week. 

What to look out for

We’ve seen reports online of people receiving calls from supposed “Thomas Cook refund agents” asking for people’s card details, including the 3 digit security code on the back. This scam is likely to convince victims, as many will be owed a refund through the ATOL Protection scheme, however, you will not be approached in this way. 

Those who are covered under ATOL Protection will need to complete a claims form to secure their refund - the CAA says that you’ll be able to find details of how to claim on the ATOL certificate you received when the holiday was booked. 

The CAA website has more information about Thomas Cook, and will be updated as the situation progresses.  

At the moment you actually aren’t able to claim refunds through ATOL Protection until the 30th of September, so any calls or messages you receive before then should be treated with suspicion. 

Money and Pension Service advice manager Andrew Johnson gave the following statement: 

“If you’re a Thomas Cook customer and have been recently affected by its collapse the CAA will be launching a service to manage all refunds on Monday 30 September. Further information will be available on the CAA website in the next few days, do not submit any claims to the CAA in the meantime. It’s possible you may be approached by scammers claiming to be a claims management company asking for your personal and payment details saying they will claim the compensation due on your behalf. If you receive a call out of the blue the safest thing to do is hang up. It’s likely you will be scammed out of your money or charged excessively high fees for a service which is free.”

Pension scams

Thomas Cook’s collapse could also affect the pensions of current and former employees. Although we haven’t heard reports of fraudsters attempting to access people’s pension pots yet, it’s possible it could happen. 

In the UK it’s illegal to cold call someone about their pension - so any phone call you get asking you questions about your pension from a company you don’t use is likely to be a scam. Hang up, and contact your pension provider directly if you have any questions. 

How to report a scam

Think you might have fallen victim or been targeted by a scam, it’s definitely worth reporting it. Sharing your story can help the police and Action Fraud find the perpetrators and prevent others from being scammed in future. 

Our article on How to report a scam or fraud takes you through the process in more detail. 

If in doubt, hang up any call that’s asking you for your bank details. It could leave you out of pocket and unfortunately it can be difficult to get your money back. 

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