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- SEC Chair Clayton Goes 'Hat in Hand' Before Congress on 2019 Budget Request
- SEC's Opening Remarks to the Elder Justice Coordinating Council
- Massachusetts Jury Convicts CA Attorney of Securities Fraud
- Deutsche Bank Says 3 Senior Investment Bankers to Leave Firm
- World’s Biggest Hedge Fund Reportedly ‘Bearish On Financial Assets’
- SEC Fines Constant Contact, Popular Email Marketer, for Overstating Subscriber Numbers
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- Cryptocurrency Exchange Bitfinex Briefly Halts Trading After Cyber Attack
- SEC Names Valerie Szczepanik Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation
- SEC Modernizes Delivery of Fund Reports, Seeks Public Feedback on Improving Fund Disclosure
- NYSE Says SEC Plan to Limit Exchange Rebates Would Hurt Investors
- Deutsche Bank faces another challenge with Fed stress test
- Former JPMorgan Broker Files racial discrimination suit against company
- $3.3Mn Winning Bid for Lunch with Warren Buffett
- Julie Erhardt is SEC's New Acting Chief Risk Officer
- Chyhe Becker is SEC's New Acting Chief Economist, Acting Director of Economic and Risk Analysis Division
- Getting a Handle on Virtual Currencies - FINRA
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NEWSLETTERS & ALERTS
Beware: Spoofed Websites Offering Phony CDs
by Howard Haykin
Are you looking to invest in a Certificate of Deposit (“CD”)? They're financial investments that: (i) come with a fixed interest rate and a fixed maturity date; (ii) are commonly sold by banks, thrift institutions and credit unions; and, (iii) are similar to savings accounts in that they are insured “money in the bank” and thus virtually risk free.
Perhaps you've come across websites and emails promoting CDs that …
- Offer interest rates higher than you can find at any other financial institution, with no penalties for early withdrawals;
- Promote only CDs and no other financial products, such as banking or brokerage accounts, loans, or commercial banking services;
- Require high minimum deposits, often $200,000 or more;
- Direct potential investors to wire funds to an account located outside the U.S., or to a U.S.-based account that has a different name than the financial institution claiming to sell the CD;
- Claim that the spoofed financial institution is a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) member and that deposits are FDIC-insured; and
- Identify “clearing partners” that they claim are registered with the SEC.
If so, be careful, the website you visited may be a fake or “spoofed” website. Website spoofing refers to fake websites that appear convincingly real – that is, they masquerade as legitimate sites by copying the design of a real website, and in some cases utilizing a URL similar to the real site. Cybercriminals use spoofed websites to capture your username and password or to drop malware onto your computer.
BE SKEPTICAL, ASK QUESTIONS. A little homework can go a long ways.
- For advice from the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on avoiding phony CDs and steps investors can take to safeguard their CD purchases, click on SEC Investor Alert.
- For advice on “spoofing” and how spoofing works, click on this Malwarebytes article.
- For advice on how to differentiate between real and spoofed websites, click on this psafe.com article.