• Saturday, December 02, 2023
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Fraud: Tips on how to avoid investment scams 

nigerians lose money to MMM (1)

Jonathan Skrmetti, an American legal expert, says that investment fraud is when people try to trick you into giving them your money to invest. They might say it’s for stocks, bonds, or other things like that. But in reality, they’re lying and giving you fake information.

They promise you’ll make a lot of money, but instead, they take your money and disappear.

Norrenberger Financial Services reported that in 2022, Nigerians lost over N300 billion because of Ponzi investment schemes.

Knowing the pain and grief scams cause people, it is important to be careful, as these frauds appearing in the form of investment have been known to happen in other countries such as the USA, India, and other parts of Africa.

Read also: Chika Nwosu urges users to prioritise security as fraud cases persist

Understanding investment scams:

Investment scams may seem like great opportunities at first. Scammers promise you’ll make quick and big profits if you give them your money. They often use things like cryptocurrency, money-doubling schemes, or tricks with stocks. They reach out through emails, social media, friends, work colleagues, business partners, church members, or mosque members to sell their fantastic get-rich-scheme idea to you.

But the truth is, these promises are fake, and they just want your money.

How scammers trick you:

Scammers will tell you that you’ll get rich fast if you invest with them. Sometimes, they show you fake stories to make them seem real.

They rush you to invest right away, creating that urgency and warning you that the opportunity won’t last for long. They want you to decide without thinking too much.

Once you’re interested, they ask you to send them money. Once they get your money, they will disappear. They become unreachable.

They don’t give you the promised profits, and they don’t answer your calls or emails.

How do you protect your money from these scams?

Read also: Banks lose N6bn to fraud in six months – Report

Here are some simple tips to keep your money safe from these scams:

Don’t just fall for that sweet talk. Always do your research before you invest. Check if the investment company or that business is legit and as rewarding as they say they are. Look at their official website and read reviews. Please always read reviews. Reviews are very important, as they give you a clear idea of the nature of that company or business.

Always double-check with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the validity and truth behind such companies or businesses.

Don’t let yourself get pressured into investing. Put on your thinking cap when someone is pressuring you to invest quickly in that business. Legit investments won’t force you to make fast decisions.

Remember, there’s no such thing as guaranteed profits. Be suspicious of anyone promising huge returns in a short time. For example, when someone says to invest this amount of money in a money-doubling business and that you will get back double the amount in two hours, be careful. You just might not be lucky.

If someone you don’t know contacts you about an investment, be cautious. Scammers often use email, phone calls, or social media.

Read also: Nigerian bank branches lost N5.5bn to fraud highest in 5yrs

Please never, for any reason, share personal information like your bank details with anyone promising an investment opportunity.

If you’re unsure, talk to a trusted financial advisor, financial expert, stockbroker, or SEC. They can help you figure out if an investment is real or a scam.

Always remember to do your research, take your time, and don’t rush into anything.