A ban on cold-calling about pensions has come into effect, as of 9 January 2019.

Cold-calling is a common tactic used by scammers to commit pensions fraud, with an estimated 8 scam calls being made every second - or 250 million a year.

The ban was originally announced in Autumn Statement 2016 but was dropped ahead of the general election in June 2017, leading to criticism that the Government had been slow to implement it.

Under the new rules, companies making unsolicited phone calls to people about their pensions could face fines of up to £500,000.

Exceptions to the ban include cases where the caller is authorised by the FCA or is the trustee or manager of an occupational or personal pension scheme, or where the recipient consents to the calls.

John Glen, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, said:

"Pension scammers are the lowest of the low. They rob savers of their hard-earned retirement and devastate lives.

"We know that cold-calling is the pension scammers' main tactic, which is why we've made them illegal."

Anyone receiving a cold call about their pension has been advised to report it to the Information Commissioner's Office.