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"Advance Fee Fraud" Schemes

April 28, 2010

Advance fee fraud schemes ask investors to pay a fee up front – in advance of receiving any proceeds, money, stock or warrants – in order for the deal to go through. These schemes may involve the sale of products or services, the offering of investments, lottery winnings, found money, or many other so-called opportunities. Advance fee fraud solicitations may include official-sounding websites or e-mail addresses.

For more information, see the Advance Fee Fraud webpage on, the SEC’s website for individual investors.

The Office of Investor Education and Advocacy has provided this information as a service to investors.  It is neither a legal interpretation nor a statement of SEC policy.  If you have questions concerning the meaning or application of a particular law or rule, please consult with an attorney who specializes in securities law.

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