“Take advantage of this investment opportunity now. Confirm your email invitation NOW, there are only a few spots left.”
“You’ll never look back!”
This is a no-risk program with high returns and little or no risk.”
Have you seen advertisements like these or Facebook posts saying you can earn big money while you work from home, touting “Obtain the financial freedom you deserve.” ?
Recently a Denver Grand Jury found sufficient evidence to charge Tyler Tysdal with violating Colorado’s Organized Crime Control Act (COCCA). Tysdal ran Cobalt Sports Capital LLC which made short-term, high-interest loans to athletes and entertainers. Through a complicated financial scheme, Tysdal defrauded investors by making false and misleading statements and by omitting key facts about his business dealings and operations. In total Cobalt obtained more than $46 million from 77 investors. Tysdal pleaded guilty to securities fraud and agreed to pay more than $18 million in restitution. (Read more here.) Tysdal’s victims were well educated investors working with investment, and even they got scammed.
Thousands of people fall victim to investment scams, Ponzi schemes, and cryptocurrency scams. In fact, the FTC reported that, ‘…since October 2020, nearly 7,000 people reported losses to bogus cryptocurrency investments, adding up to more than $80 million. People ages 20-49 were more than five times more likely than other age groups to report losing money on those scams.’ (FTC May 17,2021).
Interestingly, males over the age of 65 are one of the least likely to report being scammed but their losses are almost double that of their younger cohort. Research shows men are 19% more likely to be victims of an investment scam than women.
Remember: no crystal ball can predict investment outcomes; no one can guarantee a high return, and, as your mother always said, “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
If an interesting opportunity comes along, investigate and research. Read below for tips on investment scams.
As always, keep safe and stay well,
Online Business Coaching; Work-at-Home Scams; Real Estate Investment Seminars; Precious Metals and Coins Investments
Consumers who dream of quick and easy money are prime bait for investment scams. There are plenty of honest and experienced financial advisors and brokers, but no matter what the investment is or with whom you are working (an old friend, a trusted colleague or a financial advisor), don’t take some else’s word that this deal will be your financial ‘home run.’
Be wary of infomercials and seminars touting the secrets of their success. These infomercials hire actors to portray real people who say they have hit it rich with this money making opportunity. Whether it is a work-from home opportunity, a real estate investment or an investment coaching seminar, promoters often exaggerate the money to be made and often require a hefty fee upfront for the promise of success. Can you confirm the promoters’ success stories? If not, then move on.
Use caution if the seller wants you to act fast, and if they are only offering this opportunity to a few individuals ‘like yourself’ or if you are told you will get your investment back quickly. The FTC says there are few opportunities that require a person to act fast.
Listen for key words and phrases when being pitched an investment:
- risk-free, high yield, low risk, guaranteed income, financial freedom – no investment is risk-free
- earn big money fast, regardless of your experience or training – promises of big money, fast, is a big red flag
- a “sure thing” that will give you security for years to come – don’t let a smooth talker convince you that any investment is a sure thing
- you’ll rake in money by working part-time or at home – work part-time and rake in the money? That is too good to be true
- we’ll coach you to success each step of the way – complaints from the FTC show that once the person is paid, they often disappear fast
Scammers lie about their credentials and experience and often don’t deliver on their promise.
Before you invest think about the following red flags:
- Statistics and testimonials can be faked. Scammers want you to believe their program is always successful. They might show reviews or testimonials by people who’ve used their program and made lots of money. But those could be paid actors or made-up reviews. If you can’t confirm their stories, don’t invest.
- Scammers exaggerate the significance of current events. Scammers follow the headlines and use current events to make their investment opportunity seem exciting, innovative, and timely. They want you to feel pressured to commit now without having fully researched the offer.
- Scammers might claim that you can make thousands of dollars per day or per month for life. But they don’t tell you the risks and no one can guarantee that an investment will be successful.
- Scammers give vague answers to questions about the investment and focus only on how much money you’ll supposedly make.
- Before you invest, take the time to research.
- Look for published information about the company. Do an online search about the company and add ‘scam’ or ‘complaint’ and see what comes up.
- Check that the security is registered with the State Securities Regulators , the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies or the SEC’s database.