The list of brokers that either operate in a gray area or are simply set up as a scam is long. For the operators, the business is extremely lucrative, because once they have gained the trust of customers, they transfer extremely high sums. In some cases, even their life savings.
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Broker fraud is not a new phenomenon. This suggests the question why the authorities do not stop the perpetrators once and for all. In this article, we would like to go into more detail about why the police and supervisory authorities are often powerless and how you can still protect yourself from fraudsters on the net. We will also briefly explain what you should do if you have been taken in by a fraudulent broker.
Why are the authorities powerless?
The main reason is that the scammers operate from abroad. This creates the impression that the authorities are completely powerless, but this is not entirely true. In fact, their investigative work is made considerably more difficult. However, the perpetrators cannot completely prevent intervention by the police and the public prosecutor's office.
Instead, they often rely on a rapid change of location and constantly changing company names. This makes them harder to catch, but they also have to be constantly on their guard, because investigating authorities take action at the latest when the criminal charges against them start piling up.
For the layman, this gives the impression from the outside that the authorities are powerless. However, it is always worthwhile to file a criminal complaint. After all, in many cases it is the basic prerequisite for reclaiming stolen funds. If the scammers get caught by the police, you can claim damages against them. Crypto-Tracing closes a big gap and supports its customers by providing the authorities with proper reports. Scammers leave traces on the blockchain that being secured and documented. Together with a lawyer specializing in such cases, it is easier to bring your case to the attention of the police.
Even in cases where no cryptocurrencies have been paid to scammers, Crypto-Tracing can provide victims with the help that is needed. In cooperation with the attorney Dr. Maisch we can help in all other cases of broker fraud.
How do fraudulent brokers escape?
First of all, a distinction must be made between fraud, as defined in the sense of criminal law, and those business models in which customers are exploited. If it is fraud, then the police should be contacted. However, if the brokers operate in a gray area and work with dirty tricks, then only a lawyer and lawsuit will provide retribution, because criminal prosecution is not possible for lack of offense. If you want to learn more about how to recognize fraudulent brokers, then you should continue reading the linked article.
At the end of the day brokers are not escaping the law at all, they are hiding from it. If they work in a gray area, they often hide behind shell companies and behind contestable terms and conditions. This means that they are not directly liable to prosecution, and it is up to the customer to defend himself. Because only a small proportion of customers resist unfair methods, their business model is worthwhile. Those customers who keep quiet ultimately pay the brokers' margins. If all customers were to secure professional advice such as that offered by Crypto-Tracing, the world would immediately look very different.
As far as fraudsters are concerned, it is not uncommon for them to work in series and on a commercial basis. Therefore, they know their business and have an idea of what methods the police use. They use this knowledge to cover their tracks and make the investigation more difficult. Ultimately, they too are merely playing hide-and-seek with the law. If they do not succeed, they are threatened with high prison sentences and claims for damages they have caused.
It can also be observed in these cases that some of the victims remain inactive, which ultimately increases the chances of success for the fraudsters. Therefore, one should not hesitate to contact the professional and get expert advice.
How do I protect myself from fraudulent brokers?
The best protection is healthy caution and skepticism about offers that are too good to be true. If high returns are promised that are far above the usual market conditions, then there is usually something wrong with the offer.
Likewise, don't let account managers and customer service representatives pressure you into making a decision. Scammers like to put their victims in a situation where they repeatedly deposit money. In this way, they bind their victims because they hope that their investment will soon bear fruit, and at the same time squeeze the last penny out of their pockets.
- Do not be pressured into anything by mail, email or on the phone.
- Check every offer thoroughly. If contracts and terms and conditions are not clear or available for inspection, then always be cautious.
- If cryptocurrencies are involved, make sure they understand the risks involved and keep them manageable.
- If you have doubts at any point or things are unclear, then when in doubt, refrain from investing.
One place to go that you should definitely keep in mind is the SEC’s website. The supervisory authority regularly warns consumers about fraudulent and unauthorized offers.
I have been scammed, who can I contact?
You should always contact the police if a fraud offense has been committed. However, even experienced detectives cannot easily determine whether this a fraud case or more likely going to end as a civil lawsuit. Some brokers deliberately choose gray areas and exploit them for themselves. If you feel that you have been scammed or are quite sure that you have fallen victim to a scam, then you should contact Crypto-Tracing.
We secure and document traces through blockchain forensics. We also arrange the advice of a specialized lawyer who can take a closer look and evaluate your case. Provided there are chances of success, all necessary steps can be taken with legal assistance. Do not hesitate and do not give the scammers a chance. You can use our contact form to describe your case to us without obligation. We will then contact you promptly and advise you on the most sensible steps to take.
FAQ: Authorities and Fraudulent Brokers
What can I do if I suspect a broker is fraudulent?
If you suspect a broker is fraudulent, you should report it to the relevant regulatory authority. File a formal complaint and provide all relevant information to support the investigation. Crypto-Tracing can also assist you in this process, leveraging their expertise and experience.
Are there international organizations addressing fraudulent brokers?
Yes, there are international organizations such as the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) and the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) that deal with combating financial crime. These organizations generally encompass activities related to fraudulent brokers and their subsidiaries and corporate structures. However, it is advisable to primarily contact national authorities in your country of residence for any questions or complaints.
How long does it usually take for authorities to respond to a complaint about a fraudulent broker?
The duration of response time from authorities to such complaints can vary. The response time depends on various factors such as the workload of the authority, the complexity of the case, and the availability of evidence. In some cases, it may take weeks or months to receive a response. Therefore, it is important not to set overly high expectations and to remain patient in your dealings with the authorities.