Con artists trying to trick investors during pandemic

May 1st, 2020 | By | Category: News

Financial authorities are cautioning investors in Washington to beware of con artists seeking to capitalize on fear and uncertainty created by the coronavirus situation.
“We know con artists are opportunistic and use current events to cloak their schemes with an air of immediacy and legitimacy. Never make an investment decision without understanding what you are investing in, who you are doing business with, where your money is going, how it will be used, and how you can get it back,” said Bill Beatty, securities administrator of the state Department of Financial Institutions (DFI), which regulates the financial services industry such as banks, credit unions, mortgage brokers, consumer loan companies, payday lenders, and securities brokers and dealers.
Beatty said investors should be on the lookout for scam artists trying to use the market downturn and the coronavirus to scare investors into so-called safer, guaranteed investments.
“Always ask if the salesperson and the security are registered with their state or provincial securities regulator,” Beatty said. “Avoid making decisions based on panic or fear.”
Investors can contact the Securities Division of DFI with any questions at 360-902-8760 and at https://dfi.wa.gov/securities.

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