News story

Warning issued by the Insolvency Service on scams

The Insolvency Service has issued a warning to investors and its customers regarding a recent increase in fraudulent activity.

The Insolvency Service has issued a warning to investors and its customers regarding a recent increase in fraudulent activity, including recovery room scams, and fraudsters impersonating genuine Insolvency Service employees, in the form of emails, phone calls and letters.

Recovery room scams usually follow an investment scam, where victims have already lost money. Victims are cold called by fraudsters who pretend to be from a different company. High pressure tactics are then used to obtain upfront charges/fees, described as, for example, tax, solicitor fees and administrative fees. This can result in losses that can be greater than the initial investment loss.

To legitimise their contact, recovery room fraudsters will send fake letters with the Insolvency Service logo, spoof the Insolvency Service’s telephone numbers, provide fake Insolvency Service telephone numbers, use a fake email address like those officially used by the Insolvency Service, impersonate a legitimate employee of the Insolvency Service, and refer investors to social media accounts of Insolvency Service employees.

The Insolvency Service will never ask for an upfront fee to get your money back that you have lost in a previous investment. If contact appears to be from the Insolvency Service, or a company purporting to be acting on behalf of the Insolvency Service, asking for an upfront fee, this is a scam.

Separately, fraudsters are impersonating legitimate employees of the Insolvency Service by contacting individuals using fake email addresses and letters.

This activity is in no way affiliated with the Insolvency Service and recipients are being advised to exercise caution and familiarise themselves with the official telephone number and domains used by the agency.

Email addresses from the agency, including its staff, will always follow the Government’s official ‘’ domain. No official Insolvency Service email addresses or websites will use a domain ending in ‘’, ‘.com’ or similar.

If recipients are unsure of any communication they have received, they can verify it by contacting our customer service helpline on 0300 678 0015 or via our online contact form

Advice if you receive unsolicited approaches

  1. You should report all fraudulent contact from individuals, who state they can get your lost investments back for an upfront fee, to us by contacting our Customer Service helpline on 0300 678 0015 or via our online contact form: General Enquiry (

  2. If you suspect an email is potentially fraudulent, you should alert the Insolvency Service using the contact details as stated above.

  3. Suspicious calls, or calls individuals make claiming to act as an Insolvency Service employee, can be reported directly to us on the contact details stated above.

  4. You should also report any of the above matters immediately to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040, or by visiting their website: Action Fraud

  5. The Financial Conduct Authority also publishes a list of companies falsely purporting to be authorised by the FCA; you can check online if a warning has been posted about the company that approaches you. Just because the company that has contacted you is not on this list does not mean that they are not attempting to scam you.

  6. You can avoid many unsolicited telephone calls by registering your phone number with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS). The TPS is the official central opt-out register for people who do not want to receive unsolicited sales and marketing calls and is a free service.

  7. If you are worried that you have been a victim of a scam and paid money to fraudsters, it is important to make contact with your payment service provider immediately, using the number on the back of your debit, credit or prepaid card or by visiting their website. Advice and information on how to recover money, and for help and support is available through the Lending Standards Board’s Information for Customers booklet.

Published 31 May 2023