Carol Vorderman learns the secrets of the scammers

Do you know how to spot financial fraud?



After becoming a victim of financial fraud herself, Carol Vorderman, along with Donna Air and Rufus Hound, have been sent to Financial Fraud Action UK's Scam Academy.

As part of Take Five - a national campaign to help consumers and businesses stop fraud - Scam Academy aims to raise awareness of the often simple methods the scammers use.

In a series of videos, the three 'students' are put through their paces by three experts in the fraud sector: Alexis Conran of the BBC's Real Hustle, technical consultant Scott McGready and of the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit.

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"I was shocked by what I learnt at Scam Academy. It was a real eye-opener into the tactics scammers use to get your financial details," says Donna Air.

"Since being at the Scam Academy, I've had a conversation with my friends and family about how important it is to 'Take Five' when it comes to disclosing financial details."

The three modules cover email, text and phone scams, with each one based on real scam scenarios.

"As a victim of financial fraud myself, I think Scam Academy is an excellent way to raise awareness of a very serious issue," says Carol Vorderman, who recently revealed that she's been the victim of credit card fraud herself.

"Personally, I found the number spoofing terrifying and I didn't realise it could be so convincing. I'll definitely Take Five in future to double check who it is I'm responding to."

The Take Five campaign says people can go a long way towards protecting themselves by remembering a few basic principles.

Don't assume an email request or caller is genuine – people aren't always who they say they are - and don't let yourself be rushed. A bank or genuine organisation won't mind waiting to give you time to stop and think.

Listen to your instincts; if something feels wrong then it probably is.

Never disclose your security details, such as your PIN or full password, and have the confidence to refuse any other unusual requests for information.

"The ultimate aim of Scam Academy is to highlight that it pays to 'Take Five' if you're ever asked for financial or personal details. If you're ever unsure, never hesitate to contact the organisation in question," says Alexis Conran.

"If it's your bank or your credit card provider, use a number you trust such as the one listed on their website or on the back of your payment card."

You can watch the first video below; the others are here and here.



Victims of scams and fraud

Victims of scams and fraud