Investors should be vigilant to potential scams targeted at shareholders in Irish and other public companies.
These so called “boiler room scams” are operated by fraudsters who contact investors unexpectedly and offer to buy their shares at prices which are higher than current market value. Investors may also be offered shares that often turn out to be worthless or non-existent. These unauthorised individuals and companies obtain investor information and contact details by accessing publicly available shareholder lists. While cold-calling by phone is the most common form of contact, they may also use email, post, face-to-face contact or approach investors at seminars.
These individuals often use high pressure sales tactics and tell investors that they need to make a quick decision or miss out on a deal which will give them a large return on their investment. The offer to purchase shares will likely come with a request for bank details or money up front as a bond or other form of security, which will be accompanied by a guarantee to pay back the money involved if the sale does not go ahead. This advance fee is part of the scam and investors are unlikely to hear from them again.
If you are in receipt of an unsolicited call from someone offering to buy your shares you should: