Investment and pension scams can be sophisticated and hard to spot.
Fraudsters can be articulate and financially knowledgeable, with credible websites, testimonials and materials that are hard to distinguish from the real thing. Even experienced investors fall victim.
LBC and the Financial Conduct Authority have teamed up to help you spot the warning signs of a scam and be a ScamSmart investor.
And there’s a chance for you to win a Samsung Galaxy Book and one year of Norton Security.
Investment and pension scammers are likely to:
i. Contact you out of the blue
ii. Apply pressure to invest quickly – they might offer you a bonus or discount if you invest before a set date or say the opportunity is only available for a short period
iii. Downplay the risks to your money – they might say you will own actual assets you can sell to make back any losses or use legal jargon to suggest the investment is very safe
iv. Promise tempting returns that sound too good to be true, such as better interest rates than elsewhere
v. Say that they’re only making the offer available to you or even ask you to not tell anyone else about the opportunity
vi. Use flattery to push you into investments e.g. compliment you and your investment knowledge
i. Reject unsolicited contact about investments or your pension. If you’re contacted out of the blue about an investment opportunity, chances are it’s a high risk investment or a scam.
ii. Before investing or moving your pension, check the Financial Services Register to see if the firm or individual you are dealing with is authorised. If you deal with an unauthorised firm you will not have access to the Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).
iii. Use the FCA Warning List to check the risks of a potential investment – you can also use the tool to see if the firm is known to be operating without FCA authorisation.
iv. Get impartial financial advice from an advisor regulated by the FCA before investing or changing your pension arrangements (unconnected to the firm you are considering investing with).
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Entries close at 23.59 on 25th February 2018.