At Bridge Capital Advisors we take pride in safeguarding our clients against any potential scams which are intended for the sole purpose of cheating our clients out of their money, and we consider it our duty to give warnings about any fraudulent companies and potential scams which we know about. Although all investors tend to think that they’re far too clever to get caught out by any financial scams, here at Bridge Capital Advisors we’re all too aware that this is not the case, especially since these ‘scams’ are now far more sophisticated than they used to be.
The fraudulent brokerage firms have, over time, honed their techniques to perfection, which has resulted in the scams becoming far too slick and refined for the average investor to spot. There are financial scams that even the best financial advisors at Bridge Capital Advisors can’t identify clearly, as it’s very difficult to distinguish between the truth, false information, or just an outright scam, so we feel that the more information about scams Bridge Capital Advisors give to our clients the better it will be. The problem is that the more experienced fraud perpetrators have learnt to use the internet in order to reach a mass audience and obtain pertinent client information which they can use to set up investing scams and to help them obtain money by fraudulent means; at Bridge Capital Advisors we are always vigilant in our practices in order to safeguard our valued clients.
The most senior Bridge Capital Advisors financial consultants have compiled a list of the most common financial and investment scams and online fraudulent activities in order to ensure our clients avoid getting duped. This is just a compilation of the most common investment scams our Bridge Capital Advisors consultant know about, and the ones that we view as the most potentially harmful ones. We have also outlined some of the tools these fraudulent promoters most often use in their scams, as well as giving you a list of the most common general scams outside the financial industry.
Financial scams often use this method of reaching a wider audience. The problem is that newsletters are a perfectly legitimate tool of the trade which we even use here at Bridge Capital Advisors. They’re a great way for companies to reach their target audience and to inform their customers of their latest products, and there are many newsletters being sent out every day by many investment firms, including Bridge Capital Advisors. However, they are also used to set up financial scams by fraudulent promoters who use them to over-inflate their stocks in order to get people to pay for worthless shares, or to push the price of strong shares down by false speculation, which is basically a financial scam to drive prices down so that these fraudsters can buy good stocks at low prices. These fraudulent newsletters are a very easy way for dishonest companies to mislead investors and Bridge Capital Advisors are determined to ensure that our investors are as informed about this scam as possible. What actually makes an online newsletter a scam is when the newsletter fails to disclose who has paid them to promote a certain stock.
Please be aware when you are reading any email newsletters and try to make sure that it is not just another scam.
ONLINE BULLETIN BOARDS
A legal and legitimate tool that all financial advisors at Bridge Capital Advisors has seen abused for a scam by fraudulent companies who use it to spread false information. With investing, there are various legitimate ways of getting information about different investment assets; in a financial scam, the promoters will use online bulletin boards to spread false information in order to lure unsuspecting investors in to their trap. Once again, this is not always a scam and Bridge Capital Advisors consultants have often contributed to online bulletin boards for perfectly legitimate reasons. Many of the Bridge Capital Advisors consultants even use online bulletin boards to inform potential clients of investing scams. However, even though there are usually trained moderators present to oversee any exchange of ideas, all of Bridge Capital Advisors consultants have spotted scams perpetuated via online bulletin boards many times, the most obvious one being fraudsters ‘revealing’ supposedly inside information. A variation on this scam that we’ve noticed is when online scammers post numerous messages to promote a non-profitable company which they hold useless stock for.
This is another tool used for investment scams which Bridge Capital Advisors are always on the lookout for. Also known as junk mail, basically unsolicited messages which are commercial in nature but often have links which take you to phishing sites and which are usually part of a scam. The ‘phishing sites’ are basically scam websites which appear pretty standard but are actually cleverly constructed to scam users out of money or to gain access to sensitive information. Malware is normally found on these sites, software which is designed to gain access to private computer systems and spy on users without their permission and gather sensitive information about mobile operations; basically, these are all tools which can be used for a financial scam. Bridge Capital Advisors use very sophisticated anti-virus software in order to protect us and our clients from these scams.
There are various tell-tale signs by which to recognize potential email spams scams, and there are certain keywords or phrases which here at Bridge Capital Advisors we regard as scam alarm bells. Here are our Bridge Capital Advisors scam alerts and things to look out for:
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No1: Text which includes, and indeed highlights, phrases like “This is your lucky day!” and “Massive profits, no risk” and “100% Guaranteed!”
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No2: Any email which promises you instant returns on your investment.
Nefarious firms which are scam companies set up to sell false stocks and cheat investors out of their money. They usually operate Pump & Dump schemes, a pretty simple scam whereby promoters will buy up cheap stock of a small company where not a lot of information actually exists, boost the price up by spreading false information, and then sell the stocks to investors for inflated amounts.
Another scam often used by these companies is the Short & Distort, a scam which basically uses a smear campaign, through many different tools, like newsletters, articles and online bulletin boards, in order to drive the price of a stock down. The promoter will then buy it in bulk, wait for the bad press to die down, and then sell it for huge profits. The main Bridge Capital Advisors “Short & Distort Scam” Alert to look out for is the presence of an endless stream of bad news stories about the company, and lots of warnings on online bulletin boards and other internet forums from “concerned” investors.
This is the most famous investment scam that we know about here at Bridge Capital Advisors. It’s named after an Italian businessman, and it’s a fraudulent money-making investment scam whereby the promoter “assures” huge returns to investors by promising to invest their money in a scheme guaranteed to make huge profits. This is a common scam which is way older than Bridge Capital Advisors, and it’s a scam whereby the promoter pays investors big interest but only in the short term. The promoter is able to do this by creating a type of pyramid of investors which uses the money from new investors to pay back interest to the previous investors. The scam is that when there are no more new investors putting money into the scheme, the whole thing collapses and the promoter runs off with all the money that is left.
Here are our Bridge Capital Advisors scam alerts and things to look out for:
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No1: An emphasis on recruiting.
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No2: A promise that you will get very big returns for your investment.
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No3: The fund will be investing in a business which is hard to value, like a tech business.
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No4: The business doesn’t actually produce very much at all, like a tech research company.
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No5: The company provides no revenue from actual sales.
Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alert No6: The scheme will have a complex commission structure.
BRIDGE CAPITAL ADVISORS SCAM ALERTS:
As well as the various investment scams which are practiced by the many unscrupulous fraudsters out there, there are also a whole range of alternative scams which are not part of the investment landscape but are nonetheless designed to scam innocent members of the public of their money. We have compiled for you our Bridge Capital Advisors Scam Alerts list in order to ensure that you are equipped to recognize these scams and avoid them at all costs.
TECH SUPPORT SCAM
You may receive a call from someone claiming to be part of a software company support team who will inform you that a virus has infected your computer, asking you to provide access to your computer in order to solve the problem. This is a scam so that they can then install malware and steal your personal information.
AUTOMATIC ROBO-CALLS SCAM
This is a scam designed to help fraudsters to build up a database of potential scam victims for future reference. The best way to deal with these is to use your caller ID to screen calls and don’t answer any calls from numbers you do not know.
CHARITY DONATIONS SCAM
The unfortunate thing about this scam is that many legitimate charities also use phone calls to collect donations, which makes this scam slightly more difficult to ascertain, and it’s also fairly successful since it’s a scam which plays on peoples’ charitable affections. However, any charity phone call which is not a scam is recognizable by the fact that they should be able to provide you with any additional information that you ask for.
CREDIT CARD OPERATORS SCAM
A scam which relies on the fact that credit card companies are always offering new deals and trying to entice new customers. You will usually get an email offering you a new and improved deal or rates on your card, and they will invariably ask you to provide personal information.
GIFT VOUCHERS SCAM
Another scam which involves an email, this time offering you a free gift voucher and asking you to click on a link. They often come with original logos and corporate designs but are nothing more than a scam where they can install malware on your computer in order to steal your personal information.
COUNTERFEIT APPS SCAM
This is not a common scam but some apps have been developed which are purely designed to install malware on your computer. Try to avoid falling for this scam by only using recognized apps and maybe read up on them before you purchase them.
INCOME TAX DEBTS SCAM
You will receive an email which informs you of back taxes which you owe, asking you to pay immediately or you will receive a stiff penalty. This is a scam and it should be ignored. Tax departments do not contact their debtors by email.
DATING WEBSITES SCAM
This is a scam which is usually directed at males only and it involves the simple procedure of a pretty girl asking for money to pay for hospital bills or any other such “emergency”.
UNCLAIMED INHERITANCE SCAM
This is a scam which should be so instantly recognizable yet still people fall for it. Quite simply, an email from a fictitious law firm will inform you that you have been named as a beneficiary to a large inheritance and they will ask you for your details, in which case it’s an identity theft scam, or they will ask you for a small “processing fee”.
NIGERIAN BANK TRANSFER SCAM
A scam where a stranger will offer you the opportunity, for a small fee or your bank details, to share in the millions that they are about to transfer out of Nigeria.
An obvious and old scam where a telemarketer will ring you and ask you to take part in a survey; they will then proceed to scam you out of your personal information.
FREE GIFTS AND LOTTERY SCAM
You will receive an email informing you that you have won a substantial amount of money or are due to receive a free gift, but you must first send a small “administration fee”.
FACEBOOK FAKE-FRIEND SCAM
A scam using the huge Facebook craze where a fraudster will “friend request” you and then steal your personal information or your identity.
These are just some of the vast number of scams around at the moment so please be extra vigilant at all times.