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Investment Scams Expected to Increase Amid the Coronavirus Outbreak

Simms Law, P.C. June 14, 2022

Scammers tend to thrive in times of crisis. These unscrupulous individuals view times of uncertainty as opportunities to prey on people’s fears and insecurities. Given the effect that the coronavirus pandemic is having on the U.S. economy, scammers will certainly see this as an opportunity to take advantage of people who are desperately trying to keep their heads above water. In fact, several government entities have issued official warnings regarding the dangers presented by scammers during this uncertain time. Below is an overview of what to look out for as scammers attempt to profit from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Investment Scams

Investment scams are rampant in times of financial crisis. During times like these, scammers try to convince investors that their investment opportunities are safer and more profitable than those available in the stock market. The coronavirus has recently caused tremendous stock market losses, meaning that investment scams are certain to begin popping up to take advantage of vulnerable investors. Investment scams were a hallmark of the 2008 financial crisis. This period saw investors lose money by investing in fake certificates of deposit, non-publicly traded real estate deals, promissory notes, and investment scams involving precious metals. 

Phishing Attacks

Following the recent passage of the coronavirus federal stimulus package, scammers have already begun to launch attacks to capitalize on this event. With many citizens expecting several thousand dollars in relief payments, scammers have launched phishing attacks to take advantage of potential relief recipients. Phishing attacks are typically sent via text or email, and they aim to steal people’s personal information. These messages are designed to look like legitimate communications from reputable sources, such as the federal government, and they contain malicious links for recipients to click on. When people follow these links, scammers can gain access to their Social Security numbers, bank account data, and other sensitive information. In addition, scammers posing as federal employees may request that recipients provide sensitive information over the phone as a prerequisite for receiving stimulus money. 

Sweepstakes And Work-From-Home Scams

Finally, experts expect an increase in sweepstakes and work-from-home scams in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Work-at-home and sweepstakes scams offer victims a fast way to make money. However, they are rarely legitimate, and they simply take money from people who are desperate to make ends meet. 

Fort Lauderdale Investor Representation Attorney

At Simms Law, P.A., we want what’s best for investors. Therefore, we believe that those who defraud investors should be held accountable for their actions. Financial professionals are obligated to act in the best interests of their clients, and when they fail to do so, they should be forced to compensate their clients for any resulting losses they’ve suffered. If you’ve lost money due to the actions of a financial professional, please contact our experienced investor representation attorney today for a consultation.