DON’T FALL FOR IN­VEST­MENT SCAMS

CityPress - - Business -

We fre­quently re­ceive tip-offs from read­ers who be­lieve they have been scammed. Un­for­tu­nately, as these scams are un­reg­u­lated and dif­fi­cult to prove, the chance of be­ing re­funded are close to zero, but we hope that these warn­ings as­sist other po­ten­tial vic­tims.

Peter wrote to City Press to warn read­ers against Face­book page “Ref Wayne Forex Trader”. On June 12, he de­posited R1 000 into a Ned­bank ac­count be­ing told he would re­ceive R10 000 af­ter 10 days.

He has not seen his money since and has been blocked from the What­sApp num­ber. When City Press sent a query to the Face­book page, we re­ceived a “no com­ment” re­sponse.

Money­web pub­lished an ar­ti­cle on July 12 on Ref Wayne’s new con­tro­ver­sial in­vest­ment prod­uct af­ter the fail­ure of his Pip­coin ven­ture.

Esther wrote to City Press af­ter los­ing R40 000 to an off­shore in­vest­ment trad­ing com­pany called Vix 500. She was called by some­one from the com­pany con­vinc­ing her she would make a lot of money through its trad­ing plat­form.

“I ex­plained that I had never traded be­fore and I didn’t un­der­stand any­thing about trad­ing. He con­vinced me that I would make a lot of money through their trad­ing plat­form and showed me plat­forms of peo­ple he had been help­ing to get money.

“He said he would help me and charge 5% of my prof­its for trad­ing on my be­half.”

The caller con­vinced her to put R40 000 through her credit card and took her through the plat­form. She was told she could get her prof­its af­ter a week, but when she tried to log on, she could not ac­cess the web­site. She con­tacted the com­pany via email and was told to send a copy of her ID and credit card and they would re­lease the funds. Although she could now see her ac­count, the money was not de­posited.

She has since can­celled her card to stop any fur­ther with­drawal. City Press re­minds all read­ers not to in­vest with un­reg­u­lated plat­forms and to be wary of cold calls from peo­ple con­vinc­ing you to give them money.

De­spite in­vestors los­ing money in the MMM scheme, the “or­gan­i­sa­tion” has recre­ated it­self with a new pyramid to feed off. This week our sis­ter pub­li­ca­tion Fin24 ran a re­port of the many in­vestors who have con­tacted the pub­li­ca­tion telling of their losses, which in some cases are as high as R500 000. Fin24 re­ported that “South Africans who lost money in the frozen scheme do not ap­pear to have le­gal re­course, and many are too em­bar­rassed to speak out. Those who do are be­ing ver­bally abused on so­cial me­dia and on group mes­sag­ing fo­rums on What­sApp”.

City Press, along with Fin24, ac­tively warned peo­ple against in­vest­ing in MMM. Un­for­tu­nately, there are still peo­ple who be­lieve this is a gen­uine scheme and that the me­dia are pro­tect­ing “in­ter­ests”.

A po­ten­tial in­vestor sent through doc­u­ments from a new in­vest­ment scheme called Love and Lets Live. It claims to give a re­turn of 8% per month us­ing a va­ri­ety of forex cur­ren­cies. I think we have writ­ten enough on this page about why this in­vest­ment should raise a red flag.

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