Be aware of share fraud and 'boiler room' scams.
Many companies have become aware that their shareholders have received unsolicited phone calls or correspondence concerning investment matters which imply a connection to the company concerned.
These are typically from overseas-based 'brokers' who target UK shareholders, offering to sell them what often turn out to be worthless or high risk shares in US or UK investments. These 'brokers' can be very persistent and extremely persuasive. 5,000 people contact the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) each year, with victims losing an average of £20,000. It is not just the novice investor that has been duped in this way; many of the victims had been successfully investing for several years.
Shareholders are advised to be very wary of any unsolicited advice, offers to buy shares at a discount or offers of free reports into the company.
What you should do
If you receive any unsolicited investment advice:
- Make sure you get the correct name of the person and organisation
- Make a record of any other information they give you e.g. telephone number, address
- Before getting involved, check that they are properly authorised by the FCA at www.fca.org.uk/register
- Report the matter to the FCA, either by calling 0845 606 1234 or on its website
- Inform our registrar, Link Asset Services, on 0371 402 33 41 (it is not able to investigate such incidents itself but will record the details, pass them on to us, and liaise with the FCA)
- If the calls persist, hang up.
If you deal with an unauthorised firm, you will not be eligible to receive payment under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Details of any share dealing facilities authorised by Legal & General will be included in company mailings.
You can find more detailed information on share fraud and similar activity on the FCA's website at http://www.fca.org.uk/consumers/scams