Investing is a great idea. This helps your hard-earned cash produce more cash. Moreover, in the current economic context, people are more willing than ever to invest. The Covid-19 pandemic left many without a job or side income. So, the little money put aside would better serve as an investment. This might be a good and ambitious plan. Yet, people should be aware of the dangers investments entail.
Regardless of its nature, no investment is 100% safe. Whether we refer to the traditional stock market or the emerging cryptocurrencies. Investments can’t bring guaranteed returns. This is because they depend on so many factors. National and global economies, socio-political crisis, corporate decision, etc. All these can affect an asset’s value. So, it can make you gain or lose money.
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Nonetheless, despite uncertainty, there’s an even greater risk. Namely, scams. Many fake investors have conned people throughout history. Two notorious examples are Charles Ponzi and Bernie Madoff. Moreover, today things are even more complicated due to online technologies. There are numerous investment companies, brokers, and online exchanges. Hence, everything takes place over the internet. You don’t actually get to meet the person handling your investment.
Also, in many cases, human contact is lacking altogether. For example, when you use investment applications. This is precisely what we will focus on. Discover how to avoid phony investment apps.
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Never Trust Anyone You Don’t Really Know
This might be a sane rule you usually follow in life. If not, it’s a good idea to apply it in investments, at least. Recently, many people fell for online dating scams. What is the connection between online romance and investment apps? For starters, they are both digital. Scammers are not actually looking for love. They’re looking for illicit gains. And emotionally attached individuals are the best victims.
Online love/investment scams typically start on dating apps. Here, the con artist contacts the victim. Of course, the pretext is a potential romantic relationship. Then, the scammer gradually builds trust. And they become increasingly present in their victim’s life. Just like they were together in a real relationship. After a while, they start talking about investing.
They tell the target that they’ve found an excellent app for this purpose. They boast its profitability and ease of use. And they highlight the returns they’ve gained so far. Victims are skeptical at first. Especially if their partner talks about cryptocurrency investments. Because this is a new and complex domain, the scammer offers help. They tell victims they can invest on their behalf. All they need is money or a crypto transfer. Opening an account on a phony investment app is no rocket science. And people are willing to do this to please their online lover. Alternatively, some transfer money to the scammer’s account. Then, they realize their partner has disappeared, together with their money.
This is just an example. Investment app scams can take myriad forms. You can come across a scam like this through a Google or Facebook ad. A friend of yours might unknowingly recommend a fake exchange or a phony investment opportunity. Therefore, it’s always good to be cautious and a bit skeptical.
The Importance of Doing Research
The bottom line is you shouldn’t trust anyone who wants to invest on your behalf. If you invest, do it on your own. Or with the help of an authorized and trusted broker. It’s ok to get investment recommendations from friends. But afterward, do your research. Read more about the investment app or stock you were recommended. Look for reviews and testimonials. Try to understand how that app works and who created it. Only open an account if it’s a safe and registered company.
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Fake Investment Apps – Red Flags to Watch Out for
Copycat investment apps spoof reputable trading platforms. Stock and cryptocurrency trading apps, as well as banking applications, were targeted. Scammers copy the app’s design, including the logo. So, it’s often hard to distinguish the real from the fake app. Here are some of the major signs that might indicate you’ve landed on a fake investment app:
- You’ve received an unsolicited invitation to join the app via social media or email
- The app asks for multiple permissions (such as access to your microphone)
- The text has spelling mistakes or wrong wording
- The images seem of poor quality
- Poor-quality logos
- Only a few or no reviews online, generally bad ones
- No official website connected to the app
- Missing contact information
- No terms and conditions upon subscribing
To steer clear of phony investment apps, pay attention when downloading such apps. Look for red flags such as excessive permission requests, spelling mistakes, or poor design. Avoid investment offers that seem too good to be true. Moreover, be skeptical when someone insists you should invest through a specific app. Also, check out customer reviews before subscribing. Don’t go for brand reviews only. Those can be paid ads. Look for customer revises on websites such as Trustpilot.
Read more at Diamond Shield Management.