0 £0.00
This item was added to your basket
Credit Strategy homepage
Intelligence, Insight and community for responsible professionals in credit

Dear visitor,
You are viewing 1 of your 1 free articles

We’ve invested in our content to provide more news, analysis, features, interviews and opinions across a wide range of Credit and Financial Services. Register now to access more of the trustworthy, insightful information that’s on offer.

Register now or Login

FCA warns of “clones’” impact on firms and consumers

Fraudsters are using the details of firms the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) authorises to try to convince people that they work for a genuine organisation, the regulator has warned.

Share on LinkedInShare on TwittereCard

One example the FCA cites is a “clone firm” impersonating the free debt advice service National Debtline, using the name ‘National Debt Helpline’.


The warning is part of a wider issue of commercial firms impersonating legitimate debt advice providers. Three weeks ago, the regulator issued a similar warning about a clone firm impersonating StepChange Debt Charity.


Almost all firms and individuals carrying out financial services activities in the UK have to be authorised or registered by the FCA. There are concerns that these organisations which are not registered with the FCA, may provide inaccurate and unsuitable advice to customers.


The FCA is also concerned that fraudsters may use this tactic when, including contacting people out of the blue.


Joanna Elson, chief executive of the Money Advice Trust, which runs National Debtline, said: “The government should give the FCA powers to regulate the wider activity of ‘lead generators’ for debt advice. These lead generators often use paid ads that appear at the top of online searches, diverting people away from free charity debt advice providers, and onto commercial firms who may include fee-charging debt management companies.


“These ‘lead generator’ companies that masquerade as National Debtline and other free debt advice providers make it more challenging for people in financial difficulty to get the free, impartial advice they need. Our concern is that these impersonators can lead people into receiving unsuitable and wrong advice at a time when they are most in need of support.”

Share on LinkedInShare on TwittereCard
Add New Comment
You must be logged in to comment. Login or Register to access enhanced features of the website.


Upcoming events

Credit Strategy
LinkedIn page

Member of

Did you find our website useful?

Thank you for your input

Thank you for your feedback

creditstrategy.co.uk – an online news and information service for the UK’s commercial and consumer credit industry. creditstrategy.co.uk is published by Shard Financial Media Limited, registered in England & Wales as 5481132, Axe & Bottle Court, 70 Newcomen St, London, SE1 1YT. All rights reserved. Credit Strategy is committed to diversity in the workplace. @ Copyright Shard Media Group