Illinois’ Jesse White Helps Avoid Scams

SPRINGFIELD, IL (KMOX) – A new campaign from the Illinois Secretary of State’s office aims to help people from getting ripped off when making investment decisions.

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White says he is mounting a campaign called “Avoid the Scam;” the idea is to encourage people to be careful about to whom they entrust money to invest.

“You see what happens is that when they paint that rosy picture about how much you can earn from investing with me and how much money I can put into your bank account,” White says, “their eyes get big and they let down their guard, and they let people take advantage of them.”

He says investment scams appear to be on the rise, possibly because of the poor economy.

“”With the economy being the way that it is, I think you would probably find more scammers out there now than ever before,” White says.

The new website has information about questions people should ask before investing, as well as resources to see if a specific broker is registered or has a disciplinary record.

White says his office’s Securities Department handled more than 400 cases of investment fraud last year, with Illinois courts ordering $33 million in repayments.

“Nine times of out of 10, if a deal sounds too good to be true, it is,” he says.

People can visit the website at avoidthescam.net.

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