The Securities and Exchange Commission issued a warning about con-artists who may use the names of actual SEC employees to mislead potential victims. The SEC is already beaten down by the Madoff scandal. Now it has to deal with scam artists further dragging mud across the reputation of the SEC.
Investors should be aware that the SEC never makes or endorses investment offers or participates in money transfers. Nor does the SEC send e-mails asking for detailed personal information, or financial information such as PIN numbers.
Take steps to protect your self:
If you have reason to suspect that a caller claiming to be an examiner or other member of the staff is not a member of the SEC’s staff, consider taking the following steps. You can ask for the caller’s name, office, and telephone number, and tell the caller that you will return his or her call. The telephone numbers of all SEC offices are available on the SEC’s web site at: http://www.sec.gov/contact/addresses.htm. Using the telephone number on the SEC’s website, call the main number of the particular office that the caller identified, and ask to speak to the SEC staff person.
- SEC Press Release 2009-39 – SEC Warns Investors and Financial Firms of Government Impersonators
- “Impersonation of Securities Regulator” Scam Returns By Bruce Carton from Compliance Week ($$)
- Fake Seals and Phony Numbers: How Fraudsters Try to Look Legit from the SEC