Beware of investment fraud – Vorarlberger lost 540,000 euros

In Vorarlberg, there are still more and more reports of investment fraud – modus operandi “cyber trading fraud”.

The financial damage suffered by the victims is immense. In one case, a person from Vorarlberg lost a fortune of 540,000 euros as a result. The total amount of damage in Vorarlberg since the beginning of November has been around EUR 1,000,000.

bring money to safety

Especially in uncertain times like now, people want to keep their money “safe” and are looking for alternatives on the internet. This will take you to various advertisements. The victims then give their phone number and are contacted a short time later by an alleged broker and the crime takes its course.

The victims are lured into investing money under false pretenses. The aim of the perpetrators is to get the victim’s money. This is mainly done via the Internet, but sometimes also by telephone, and includes the investment of funds in funds, stocks, gold, bitcoins, options, currencies and other products. These are usually high-risk financial instruments that are only suitable for experienced investors.

Professional offenders

The perpetrators act in a highly professional manner and rely on impressive advertising measures to reach a large number of people. In addition, the websites, trading portals or trading platforms used are very complex. By using Austrian, German or British telephone numbers, the perpetrators want to pretend to be serious, and they have excellent psychological training. It is striking that the perpetrators repeatedly gain access to the victims’ computers and mobile phones via remote maintenance tools and then use this access to carry out transfers, account registrations at trading exchanges for cryptocurrencies, etc. on behalf of the victims.

Virtual trades suggest to the victims that the alleged investment is increasing or that profits are being made, although this is not the case. In some cases, there are also individual payments to strengthen trust. The money paid in is then smuggled through a money laundering network that is difficult to understand and thus reaches the perpetrators. This is usually done via accounts or payment service providers abroad. This significantly complicates investigations in this area.

Tips from the State Criminal Police Office:

  • Please note investor warnings from the Financial Market Authority in Austria www.fma.gv.at and possibly other states.
  • Internet research on the company/provider (approved in the respective country, fraud warnings) – ATTENTION: Apparent approvals are often listed on the platforms – be skeptical and question them.
  • Extreme caution is required when there is a prospect of high profits/returns in a short period of time.
  • Do not, under any circumstances, allow the rogue brokers to access your computer or cell phone remotely.
  • The alleged company headquarters often do not match the recipient country (account). An absolute warning sign!!!
  • If platforms do not have an imprint, this is a strong indication of a fraudulent platform.

If you are the victim of investment fraud, you can report it to your local police department at any time. Inquiries: State Criminal Police Office Vorarlberg, Tel. +43 (0) 59 133 80 3333

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