The Personal Finance Society (PFS) has said it wants to put accredited financial advisers "at the public's fingertips" with the relaunch of its adviser directory.
The online database will give consumers access to more than 22,000 professionally qualified financial advisers, representing over 80% of the UK's regulated financial adviser community, the PFS said.
It will form part of a planned overhaul of the professional body's findanadviser.org site, announced initially at its annual conference last November.
"Consumer demand for an ‘accredited' professional financial adviser directory is growing as they become increasingly aware of the need and value of professional advice services," said PFS chief executive Keith Richards (pictured).
The professional body said it is reacting to increasing concerns of website cloning and the risk of fraudsters emerging to take advantage of the unsuspecting public.
The database will offer the public greater protection and reassurance that adviser information contained within a directory - including qualifications and active statements of professional standing (SPS) - are both accurate and independently validated, the PFS said.
All users need to do is input a town or postcode to obtain a list of financial advisers local to them.
Searches can be refined according to a range of interests and the financial adviser profiles listed in the returns will clearly show SPS validation dates, professional qualifications and specialist accreditations.
PFS members will automatically appear in search results and can tailor their profile to include areas of advice specialism as well as social media links.
There is no commercial consideration or conflicts of interest to ensure the directory offers an impartial public reference site, the PFS said.
The new directory is intended to complement other directories in the market rather than be competitive," Richards said, "as we seek to broaden the breadth of access to financial advice and support at the public's fingertips."
The new website is planned for launch later this summer.