Beat the fraudsters: the scams to look out for this summer

A new guide, supported by Royal Bank of Scotland, will help you identify 17 types of fraud – and, crucially, how to avoid falling for a scam.

According to the supporters of Little Book of Big Scams – including Police Scotland, the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) and Royal Bank of Scotland – these are the hot topics people should be aware of. 

The publication of the guide, which shares defence tactics alongside the risks it identifies, couldn’t come at a more critical time. According to the latest Recorded Crime in Scotland Survey, online fraud and scams in Scotland have increased 69% since 2011/12. 

Judith Cruickshank, Regional Managing Director, Scotland and North of England, at Royal Bank of Scotland, explains: “Many of us think we’re savvy when it comes to online fraud. However, scammers are using increasingly sophisticated measures to trick unsuspecting people. Royal Bank of Scotland is dedicated to keeping customers’ money secure and offering people the support they need to help make themselves safer. By working together, we can help tackle online scams. The Little Book of Big Scams provides specialist guidance on financial protection, identifying risks and finding solutions so that everyone is better prepared.”

This summer’s top scams

  1. Holiday fraud: online scammers use current pressures on the travel industry to exploit consumers when booking accommodation, as well as pointing to other travel services that do not exist. Ensure your booking is covered by the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA), and pay by credit card, which may offer you better protection.
  2. Ticketing fraud: With sporting and music events back on the summer’s social calendar, people need to mindful about where they buy their tickets so they are not left empty-handed and out of pocket. Buy tickets from the official event promoter only, and be alert to anyone asking for ticket payment via bank transfer, which could make it more difficult for you to recover your funds.
  3. Scam mail: Scammers entice victims via post or emails with an unbelievable offer or competition, typically targeting the elderly or vulnerable. Potential victims should be wary about sharing personal details and being offered so-called prizes from competitions or draws you didn’t enter. 

The guide covers 17 different scams, including online and cash machine fraud, door-to-door scams, romance/dating fraud and courier fraud, advising what to look out for and how to protect yourself in each case. 


Download the Little book of big scams (PDF, 10MB).

What to do if you fall for a scam

Anyone who thinks that they may have fallen victim should contact their bank immediately on an official phone number, such as the one printed on a bank statement or debit card. To report a crime in Scotland, call 101.


This material is published by NatWest Group plc (“NatWest Group”), for information purposes only and should not be regarded as providing any specific advice. Recipients should make their own independent evaluation of this information and no action should be taken, solely relying on it. This material should not be reproduced or disclosed without our consent. It is not intended for distribution in any jurisdiction in which this would be prohibited. Whilst this information is believed to be reliable, it has not been independently verified by NatWest Group and NatWest Group makes no representation or warranty (express or implied) of any kind, as regards the accuracy or completeness of this information, nor does it accept any responsibility or liability for any loss or damage arising in any way from any use made of or reliance placed on, this information. Unless otherwise stated, any views, forecasts, or estimates are solely those of NatWest Group, as of this date and are subject to change without notice. Copyright © NatWest Group. All rights reserved.

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