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The SEC Warns Against Investment Fraud That Targets Seniors and Federal Retirement Investors

In an effort to reduce potential securities investment fraud, the SEC is warning senior investors, retirees, and those with federal retirement investments to be leery of solicitors claiming affiliation with the federal government. No federal government agencies sponsor or endorse any securities, issuers, products or services, firms or individuals.

Federal Retirement Securities Investment Fraud Red Flags

Someone claiming to be affiliated or endorsed by the government contacts you regarding your retirement investments and suggests altering or moving your retirement into a new investment vehicle. They may even send you to a website that appears official.

An individual claiming to be a government employee, or claiming affiliation with a government agency or endorsement by the government, calls or leaves a message requesting personal information. A federal agency will never contact you by email or telephone or mail asking you to provide personal information such as social security numbers, passwords, pins or account numbers.

Be leery of any companies that include the words federal or government in their name. In addition they should not use government emblems or seals (or lookalikes) or suggest that they are affiliated or endorsed by the government.

Be cautious of embedded links that may appear to take you directly to a legitimate government site. These may be clever fakes. Instead go directly to the official government website from your browser.

You can confirm any suggested affiliation by contacting the government agency directly, or call the SEC investor assistance line: at 800-732-0330.

A recent example of a similar investments fraud scheme includes charges by the SEC against four former Atlanta-area brokers who, under the entity “Federal Employee Benefits Counselors,” encouraged federal employees to roll over holdings from their federal Thrift Savings Plans (TSP) into higher-fee, variable annuity products.

According to the charges, the brokers consistently misled investors into believing their funds were being invested in a vetted TSP program or that the company was affiliated with or approved by the federal government.

According to the press release,

the brokers sold approximately 200 variable annuities with a total face value of approximately $40 million to federal employees. The brokers collectively earned approximately $1.7 million in commission on these sales.

For the full press release visit: https://www.sec.gov/news/press-release/2017-135

If you have questions about investment fraud, financial schemes, broker misconduct, or about your broker’s management of your account, please contact our Securities Law Firm at: 313-334-7767 for a Free case evaluation. We have been helping investors recover losses from fraudulent financial advisers for over 20 years!