Chicago, IL – September 18, 2012 – Before you invest your
earnings, it is very important for you to verify the credibility of the
investment firm and in the process avoid being scammed. The Better Business
Bureau serving Chicago & Northern Illinois (BBB) advises consumers to ask
questions, research the company, reach out to local investment firms and
advisers, and talk to other investors. It is essential to take precautions with
all investment opportunities.
important to invest your money wisely to prepare for the future,” said Steve J.
Bernas, President and CEO of the BBB. “But do not get pressured into investing
without doing adequate research to make sure it is a legitimate and positive
Financial Industry Regulatory
Authority (FINRA) Investor, specializing in investment fraud has an array of
valuable information to help you sort through investment decision making. FINRA
and the BBB provide some strategies you can
use if you are not certain about a specific investment opportunity:
conversation- practice saying “No”. Simply tell the
person, “I am sorry, I am not interested. Thanks you.” Or tell anyone who
pressures you, “I never make investing decisions without first consulting my
financial advisor or spouse. I will contact you if I am still interested.”
Knowing your exit strategy in advance makes it easier to leave the
conversation, even if the pressure starts rising.
Turn the tables
and ask questions. A legitimate investment professional must be properly
licensed, and his or her firm must be registered with the Financial Industry
Regulatory Authority (FINRA), the Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC) or a state securities regulator (for Illinois, this is the Secretary
of State) depending on the type of business the firm conducts.
Talk to someone
first. Be extremely skeptical if the person promoting the deal says, “Don’t
tell anyone else about this special deal!” A legitimate investment professional
won’t ask you to keep secrets.
business with the BBB. Research the company that you are purchasing from
and make sure that other customers were happy with their product. Look for the
BBB Accredited Business seal on both Web sites and only purchase with
businesses that have a good rating with BBB.
these strategies will help protect you from fraudsters. Remember, the more
knowledgeable you are when making investments, the less likely you are to
become a victim. When making an investment there is no urgency to race against
the clock – take your time and make an informed decision.
For more consumer
tips, visit www.bbb.org
and enter your zip code to visit the BBB closest to you.
As a private, non-profit organization, the
purpose of the Better Business Bureau is to promote an ethical marketplace.
BBBs help resolve buyer/seller complaints by means of conciliation, mediation
and arbitration. BBBs also review advertising claims, online business practices
and charitable organizations. BBBs develop and issue reviews on businesses
and nonprofit organizations and encourage people to check out a company or
charity before making a purchase or donation.