PHOENIX – The Arizona Corporation Commission´s Securities Division is cautioning investors to learn the red flags of investment fraud and to not get fooled by an investment promoter touting a “safe” investment opportunity void of any volatility and risk of financial loss.
The Corporation Commission’s Securities Division is responsible for protecting investors from unfair and fraudulent practices in the securities industry, while at the same time promoting an honest and fair securities market in Arizona where individuals and businesses can raise capital and investors can expect a fair return on their investment. “Investor education is a critical component to securities regulation and oversight,” says Chairwoman Marquez Peterson. “The best enforcement is fraud prevention by raising awareness in the investing public before financial losses occur.”
While volumes of investment expertise are now available at the click of a mouse, state securities regulators still remain investors' first line of defense against fraud. The Commission’s Securities Division investigate complaints, bring enforcement actions, register brokers and educate investors at the grass-roots level. Cryptocurrency scams, real estate investment frauds, promissory note schemes are among some of the problematic investments that can threaten an investor’s life savings.
Investors are most vulnerable to being scammed when they are swept away by the representations of a promoter and are not willing to ask questions and verify the answers. Con artists try to gain an investor’s trust and will have an answer to every objection that is raised. They may even embarrass or intimidate an investor into making a quick decision, using fear and intimidation to cloud a person’s good judgment.
To learn questions to ask that can turn off a swindle, investors should visit the “Ask and Check” section of azcc.gov/azinvestor. Most importantly, the Corporation Commission´s Securities Division urges investors to contact the Investigator on Duty by telephone at 602 542-0662 or by email at SecuritiesDiv@azcc.gov to determine license status and possible disciplinary history of the promoter.