On 28 June 2022, the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) published its annual complaints data 2021/22.

The complaints data shows that complaints about ‘authorised’ scams increased by around a fifth in the last financial year, with nearly 9,370 complaints being received compared to 7,770 in 2020/21. Furthermore, administration and customer service problems topped the list of issues where customers had problems, with more than 35,000 complaints against financial businesses being brought to the FOS.

The FOS also published commentary and insight on complaints received in 2020/21, including analysis and case studies covering banking and credit, borrowing, insurance and investments.

Analysis of the figures highlights the following trends:

  • More than 35,000 complaints were in relation to customer service or administration across all financial products. Examples of this included a lack of attention to detail, and sending personal information to the wrong address.
  • Current accounts were the most complained about product, with nearly 25,000 new cases coming to the FOS. With the number of cases about ‘authorised’ scams increasing, there continues to be high numbers of fraud and scams cases in 2021/22, with more than 17,500 new complaints in total. New trends in scams involving social media and scams relating to fake investments have also emerged.
  • COVID-19 and the cost-of-living crisis continued to impact on people’s financial lives. Last year, overall, 57,000 complaints linked to all types of borrowing were received. For example, there was an increase in complaints about second charge mortgages, including from people in financially vulnerable positions. In some cases, it was evidenced that interest rates of over 35% were being applied to the loans.