Lord offers Rotary tips on scammers

Published 7:03 pm Wednesday, February 14, 2007

By By Adrienne McKenzie
Daniel Lord, the Education and Public Affairs manager for the Alabama Securities Commission, discussed scams, investments and financial education at Atmore Rotary Club's weekly luncheon at the Atmore Community Hospital Tuesday.
Lord has been working for ASC since 2000, after retiring from the U.S. Air Force as a Lt. Col. He served in the Air Force for 23 years. He is the organizer of both local and national public relations events for the Commission's Director and management staff to help publicize enforcement activities, fraud prevention tips and free monetary education programs and materials for the citizens of this state.
Lord said ASC does not give or sell investment advice, however they do give away certain materials to help in this topic.
"We have free education curriculum for any age citizens," he said. "These materials help to protect from security fraud."
It is important for anyone to do a background check before making any investments. ASC provides background checks on any company or the products those companies produce.
"Before you invest in anything, call ASC and have us run a background check on the product," Lord said. "We are not here to advise but to provide education."
ASC does not say whether or not to buy a particular product; the company is just a provider of facts to help the customer make an informed decision before investing.
"We can provide information on what to do before investing." Lord said. "Also, we provide information on what to do if you believe you've been scammed."
Scams can appear to be just as legitimate as information that is actually valid, he said.
"Scams look a lot like registered products," Lord said. "A con can make you believe anything."
The ASC recommends staying away from unknown companies that use phrases such as "guaranteed to double your money" or "to get the most from this investment opportunity, you can borrow money or take out a mortgage and be set for life."
ASC also has some tips for prevention, such as checking the registration of the seller and product offered by contacting the ASC. It is also suggested to never accept a verbal contract, never to sign anything without fully understanding it and to ask a lot of questions. These tips are important to steer clear from "scammers."
For more information on the Alabama Securities Commission and the services they provide, please call 334-242-2984 or email asc@asc.alabama.gov.

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