A WA Woman Has Been Fleeced For $670,000 By Investment Scammers Using 'Twiggy' Image

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The West Australian

Investment scammers have been tormenting Australians this year with a Bunbury women falling victim to an elaborate scheme causing her to lose a total of $670,000. 

After seeing the scheme advertised on both Facebook and LinkedIn back in March, the WA woman has made six separate deposits to bank accounts in Australia and Germany. 

To lure the woman into a false sense of security, the fraudsters deposited $58,000 into her account after she requested to withdraw money from her trading account. Unfortunately, the deception did not end there with the scammers sending her a $2,700 Louis Vuitton bag as a birthday gift.  

Commissioner for Consumer Protection Penny Lipscombe says scammers have been using images of celebrities to make the scams appear legitimate. 

“In this case the bogus investment scheme used Andrew Forrest’s image and provided links to false news reports of him endorsing the scheme, making the offer look authentic and convincing,”

- Penny Lipscombe

This year, 15 WA victims have reported scams with a combined loss of almost $2.7 million between them. Last years reports showed a total of 63 WA victims with a combined loss of $5.9 million. 

To prevent further deception, here is a list of tips for avoiding dodgy investment scams: 

  • Don't respond to phone calls and emails from strangers providing details, predictions on shares, investment tips and investment advice. 
  • Be suspicious people attempting to sell you shares or cryptocurrency and offers to take part Binary Options Trading, especially if the company appears to be from overseas. 
  • Make sure to research before investing and do not invest any money you are not prepared to lose. 
  • If someone is putting the pressure on you to invest and promising high returns, make sure to stop and ask yourself if it's too good to be true. 
  • Get independent advice from licensed financial advisors. 
  • Check the ASIC MoneySmart website to see a detailed list of companies you should avoid dealing with. 

If you would like to double check an investment offer or would like to report a suspected scam, call ScamNet on 1300 30 40 54. 

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Georgie Marr

20 September 2019

Article by:

Georgie Marr

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