The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy provides a variety of services and tools to address problems you may face as an investor. Investor Alerts, focused on recent investment frauds and scams, and Investor Bulletins, focused on topical issues including recent Commission actions, are provided as a service to investors. They are neither legal interpretations nor statements 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. Subscribe to get Investor Alerts and Bulletins by email.

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Date
Title
Category
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: Investor Complaints
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Bulletin to inform investors about how OIEA handles investor complaints and other ways investors may be able to resolve a securities-related dispute.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Beware of Government Impersonators Targeting Fraud Victims
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Alert because we are aware of communications, including official looking documents, that falsely claim to be issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission and seek money from investors who have already been victims of fraud.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Zika Crisis May Give Rise to Investment Scams
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about potential investment scams involving companies that claim their products or services relate to the Zika virus.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Beware of False or Exaggerated Credentials
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors that fraudsters may misrepresent their backgrounds and experience to lure investors into investment schemes. Before investing, investors should verify that any person who tries to sell them an investment product or service is properly licensed or registered and should not make investment decisions based solely on assertions regarding the person’s credentials or professional experience, including claims found on the Internet or in traditional media sources.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Alert: “Prime Bank” Investments Are Scams
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about fraudulent investment schemes involving purportedly high-yield, risk-free international finance programs.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: How Harmed Investors May Recover Money
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to educate investors about how they may be able to recover money if they have been harmed by a violation of the federal securities laws.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Investment Scams Involving Ebola-Related Companies
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about investment scams involving companies that claim their products or services relate to Ebola.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Updated Investor Alert: Social Media and Investing - Avoiding Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help investors be better aware of fraudulent investment schemes that may involve social media. U.S. retail investors are increasingly turning to social media, including Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn and other online networks for information about investing. Whether it be for research on particular stocks, background information on a broker-dealer or investment adviser, guidance on an overall investing strategy, up-to-date news, or to simply discuss the markets with others, social media has become a key tool for U.S. investors.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Investor Bulletin: SEC Investigations
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors with a general overview of how the SEC’s Division of Enforcement conducts investigations.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Alert: Affinity Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors about affinity fraud, a type of investment scam that preys upon members of identifiable groups, such as religious or ethnic communities or the elderly.
Category:Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: INVESTOR ALERT: INVESTMENT NEWSLETTERS USED AS TOOLS FOR FRAUD
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help investors avoid fraudulent schemes that may be carried out through investment newsletters.
Category:Enforcement
Investment Management
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: INVESTOR ALERT: MARIJUANA-RELATED INVESTMENTS
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about potential risks involving investments in marijuana-related companies.
Category:Corporation Finance
Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Trading and Markets
Date: Title: INVESTOR ALERT: BITCOIN AND OTHER VIRTUAL CURRENCY-RELATED INVESTMENTS
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to make investors aware about the potential risks of investments involving Bitcoin and other forms of virtual currency.
Category:Corporation Finance
Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: INVESTOR ALERT: BEWARE OF FALSE CLAIMS OF SEC REGISTRATION
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about potentially fraudulent investment schemes that involve individuals or firms misrepresenting that they are registered with the SEC. Investors should be careful to check the background, including license and registration status, of any person who tries to sell them an investment product or service, and should avoid investing with anyone who falsely represents that they are registered with the SEC.
Category:Corporation Finance
Enforcement
Investor Education and Advocacy
Date: Title: Delinquent Filings
The Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Bulletin to provide investors with information on the SEC's Delinquent Filings Program.
Category:Corporation Finance
Enforcement
Trading and Markets
Date: Title: Investment Scams Exploit Immigrant Investor Program
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services are jointly issuing this Investor Alert to warn individual investors about fraudulent investment scams that exploit the Immigrant Investor Program, also known as "EB-5."
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Beware of Pyramid Schemes Posing as Multi-Level Marketing Programs
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn individual investors about pyramid schemes, a type of investment scam that fraudsters often pitch as a legitimate business opportunity in the form of multi-level marketing programs.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: SEC Warns of Fake Correspondence
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about fraudulent solicitations using correspondence claiming to be from SEC staff and Commissioners (including phony letters using the SEC seal and purporting to be signed by Commissioner Daniel Gallagher).
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Ponzi Schemes Using Virtual Currencies (PDF)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this investor alert to warn individual investors about fraudulent investment schemes that may involve Bitcoin and other virtual currencies.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Beware Investment Offers Implying SEC Endorsement
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help investors identify fraudulent investment offers made by firms purporting to have met with the SEC, including in international locations (such as Dubai). SEC staff is aware of a number of fraudulent schemes where the person offering the so-called investment refers to meetings with the SEC as a way of convincing potential investors that the fraudulent investment opportunity is legitimate. The SEC does not "approve" or "endorse" any particular securities, issuers, products, services, professional credentials, firms, or individuals, and does not allow private entities to use its government seal.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Don't Trade on Pump-And-Dump Stock Emails
FINRA and the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy are issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors to be on the lookout for email spam promoting “pump-and-dump” stock scams.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Binary Options and Fraud (PDF)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Office of Consumer Outreach (CFTC) are issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors about fraudulent promotion schemes involving binary options and binary options trading platforms. These schemes allegedly involve, among other things, the refusal to credit customer accounts or reimburse funds to customers, identity theft, and manipulation of software to generate losing trades.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: SEC Warns of Bogus Securities Regulators Soliciting Investors
Securities and Exchange Commission staff is issuing this Investor Alert in response to a number of fraudulent solicitations currently underway that purport to be affiliated with or sponsored by the federal government and legitimate securities regulators. If you are contacted by an organization calling itself the "Chicago Division of Securities," the "Division of Securities, Chicago Illinois," the "Federal Division of Securities, New York" or the "New York Securities Division," be aware that they are not affiliated with the Securities and Exchange Commission and are not legitimate securities regulators. They are scams.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Private Oil and Gas Offerings (PDF)
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this alert to educate individual investors about certain risks and possible fraudulent activity involving private offerings of securities for oil and gas ventures.
Category:Corporation Finance
Enforcement
Date: Title: SEC Warns of Government Impersonators (Updated)
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Be on the Lookout for Investment Scams Related to Hurricane Sandy
The SEC's Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors, including individuals who may receive lump sum payouts from insurance companies and others following Hurricane Sandy, about investment fraud.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Affinity Fraud (PDF)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors about affinity fraud, a type of investment scam that preys upon members of identifiable groups, such as religious or ethnic communities or the elderly.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: CMKM Diamonds Investors
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investors Beware of Government Impersonators
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Social Media and Investing - Avoiding Fraud (PDF)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help investors be better aware of fraudulent investment schemes that may involve social media. U.S. retail investors are increasingly turning to social media, including Facebook,YouTube,Twitter, LinkedIn and other online networks for information about investing. Whether it be for research on particular stocks, background information on a broker-dealer or investment adviser, guidance on an overall investing strategy, up-to-date news, or to simply discuss the markets with others, social media has become a key tool for U.S. investors....
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investment Seminars –- Trading Seminar Fraud
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act -– Prohibition of the Payment of Bribes to Foreign Officials
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) generally prohibits the bribing of foreign officials. The FCPA also requires publicly traded companies to maintain accurate books and records and to have a sys-tem of internal controls sufficient to provide reason-able assurances that transactions are executed and assets are accounted for in accordance with management’s authorization and recorded as necessary to permit the preparation of financial statements in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles (known as “GAAP”). The FCPA can apply to prohibited conduct anywhere in the world, even, in certain circumstances, where there is no U.S. territorial connection, and extends to publicly traded companies (“issuers”) and their officers, directors, employees, agents, and stockholders. Agents can include third party agents, consultants, distributors, joint-venture partners, and others.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Self-Directed IRAs and the Risk of Fraud
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) and the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) are issuing this Investor Alert to warn investors of the potential risks associated with investing through self-directed Individual Retirement Accounts (self-directed IRAs).
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Warning Regarding Possible Advance Fee Fraud Targeting Deaf Investors
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this update to alert investors, including deaf investors, about “Imperia Invest IBC” and similarly-named companies.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Cobell Indian Trust Settlement Payout Recipients - Be on the Lookout for Investment Scams (PDF)
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors, including individuals receiving lump sum payouts from the federal government in connection with the $3.4 billion Indian Trust Settlement, about potential investment frauds that target recipients of lump sum payouts.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Stanford Investors
On March 12, 2009, U.S. District Court Judge David C. Godbey issued an order at the request of Stanford court-appointed receiver Ralph S. Janvey unfreezing approximately 16,000 Stanford investor accounts at Pershing LLC and J.P. Morgan Clearing Corp., unless an exception described in the order applies.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Information for Stanford Investors
On March 12, 2009, U.S. District Court Judge David C. Godbey issued an order at the request of Stanford court-appointed receiver Ralph S. Janvey unfreezing approximately 16,000 Stanford investor accounts at Pershing LLC and J.P. Morgan Clearing Corp., unless an exception described in the order applies.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Early Retirement Seminars: Smart Tips for Spotting Retirement Scams
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Pre-IPO Investment Scams
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this updated Investor Alert to warn investors about investment scams that purport to offer investors the opportunity to buy pre-IPO shares of companies, including social media and technology companies such as Facebook and Twitter. SEC staff is aware of a number of complaints and inquiries about these types of frauds, which may be promoted on social media and internet sites, by telephone, email, in person, or by other means.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: BP Payout Recipients: Be on the Lookout for Investment Scams
The SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy is issuing this Investor Alert to help educate investors, including individuals and small businesses receiving lump sum payouts from BP related to the oil spill in the Gulf, about potential investment frauds that target recipients of lump sum payouts.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Warning Regarding Web-Based Scheme Defrauding Deaf Investors
The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has charged an Internet-based investment company, Imperia Invest IBC (“Imperia”), with securities fraud for soliciting several million dollars from U.S. investors and promising guaranteed annual returns in excess of 1.2% per day while in reality siphoning the funds into foreign bank accounts and not paying any money back to investors.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investors Beware of Entity Calling Itself "U.S. Securities and Equities Administration"
The staff of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is issuing this Investor Alert about an entity calling itself the “U.S. Securities and Equities Administration” and other similar names, including the “U.S. Securities Administration” or the “U.S. Securities Bureau.”
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Oil Spill Stock Scams - Don't Get Cleaned Out by False Cleanup Claims
The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico poses more than an environmental and economic threat to the region. It also poses a financial threat to investors in the form of scams promising financial gains from investments in companies that claim to be involved in cleanup operations.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Investor Warning Relating to Eric V. Bartoli, Enrico Orlandini, and DT Analysis a/k/a and Dow Theory Analysis SAC
The staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has received credible information suggesting that an individual named Eric Bartoli, who was previously sued by the SEC for securities fraud, may currently be located in Peru and engaged in securities solicitations of investors, using the alias Enrico Orlandini.
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: SEC Investor Alert on Phony SIPC "Look-Alike" Website Targeting Madoff Victims
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Information for Reserve Primary Fund Investors
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Information Concerning Malaysian Restitution Fund for SwissCash Investors
This Alert concerns a restitution fund established by the Securities Commission Malaysian (“Malaysian SC”) in a settlement involving various entities operating under the name “Swisscash”, including “Swiss Mutual Fund (1948),” and through websites encompassing variations on the names “Swisscash” and “SwissMutualFund.”
Category:Enforcement
Date: Title: Prime Bank Fraud Information Center
Category:Enforcement
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