The most common scams were via texts, with 16 to 34 year-olds targeted the most
Ofcom has calculated 45 million people were victims scam calls and texts this summer with fraudsters are becoming increasingly sophisticated.
Nearly 82 per cent of people surveyed by Ofcom said they had received a suspicious text, recorded message or live phone call to a landline or mobile.
This represents an estimated 44.6 million adults in the UK. Scams are more commonly attempted over text messages, of those surveyed 44 per cent who had received a suspicious text message reported receiving such a message at least once a week.
Ofcom says suspicious calls continue to be a threat for landline users, with older people particularly susceptible. Three in five people aged 75 are reckoned to have received a potential scam call to their landline.
Katia Gonzalez, head of fraud prevention and security at mobile data carrier BICS, believes more can be done to address the problem: “It is clear a fundamental rethink is required. We need to do more to stop the scammers at source. This means greater collaboration. Telecoms firms, governments and regulators need to work together, with better coordination between countries, and sharing resources and information on the latest vulnerabilities.”
“Artificial intelligence can be used to prevent these calls from reaching the public. Unfortunately, methods of attack grow more sophisticated and more damaging. The international telecoms community must come together and work with regulators and governments to find a solution that respects people’s privacy, and ultimately keeps them safe from scams.”
EE revealed it has invested millions of pound to protect its customers from scams.
In a statement, a spokesperson from the operator said: “We recently introduced an anti-spam filter that has blocked more than 42 million spam and scam SMS from our network.
“We’ve invested millions of pounds to protect our customers and educate them to be scam aware, as we know that scam calls and texts are a real concern.”