Helping young people become ‘scam-aware’
To mark Scams Awareness Month, we hear from Director of Sustainable Banking, Kirsty Britz on how the bank’s MoneySense programme is helping young people learn about the importance of keeping money safe.
20 July 2017
There has been a sharp rise in the number of under-25s hit by scams and the proportion of victims of online and identity fraud is growing, according to recent evidence from Citizen’s Advice,
As ‘digital natives’ who have grown up immersed in technology, young people appear confident in their online ability. But this can lead to them thinking they’re unlikely to fall for scams targeted through these routes, in turn leading to complacency and increasing their vulnerability to scams.
Our MoneySense programme helps young people learn about money. This includes being ‘scam aware’ and learning about how to keep money safe. It’s important that young people learn before they earn, so that once they hit adulthood and become responsible for money, they have a foundation of financial skills and knowledge to stand them in good stead.
The programme has a number of modules specifically designed to get young people thinking about keeping money safe:
- 'How can I keep my money safe?’ is aimed at 8-12 year-olds, and gets young people thinking about some of the risks associated with spending money online. It encourages them to think of ways of keeping money safe when using the internet and how to avoid online scams. And it helps them see the consequences of financial scams and their personal impact.
- ‘How do I keep my finances secure?’ is aimed at 12-16 year-olds. It explores the different types of frauds and scams and how to recognise and prevent them from happening, so that students learn about how to protect themselves from fraud.
- ‘How can I avoid identity theft and fraud?’, which will launch later this year, is aimed at 16-18 year-olds and will look at different forms of identity theft and fraud, the financial and emotional impact they might have, and ways to avoid them. This will include students being informed about the changing nature of identity theft and fraud so that they can stay one step ahead.
We’ll also be launching a fraud-related workshop for our employees to deliver in schools next year, so watch this space.
So far MoneySense has helped around 4.5 million young people learn about money, and we want to help a million more by the end of 2018. Our own research shows that 55 per cent of young people (7-15 year-olds) in the UK frequently worry that they don’t know enough about money - so I’m committed to RBS helping more young people learn about money, and importantly, how to keep their money safe.
MoneySense is the bank’s free and impartial financial education programme for 5-18 year-olds and has helped around 4.5 million young people learn about money over the last 22 years. The programme has been created with the help of teachers, parents and young people. It’s linked directly to the school curriculum, has received the Financial Education Quality Mark and is accredited by Young Enterprise.
Easy to use, interactive and fun, the MoneySense programme provides everything needed teach young people about managing money in a way that’s relevant to their lives. For more information visit the MoneySense website.
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