Falling victim to fraud is one of the biggest concerns for older people, according to a national survey by Age Scotland that found eight out of ten over-50s have been targeted in financial scams.

The charity has called for greater protection for the public, particularly older people, from the “heartless” criminals trying to strip them of their savings.

Others describe the rising cases as an epidemic that needs urgent action.

Fraud rose rapidly during the Covid crisis and official data indicates that every day up to 1,000 people fall for scams often involving text messages or emails that purport to be from banks or familiar organisations such as the NHS, HMRC or Royal Mail.

Brian Sloan, chief executive of Age Scotland, said more can be

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