It’s so annoying when good, hard working people get scammed out of their money. It’s even worse when those good, hard working people are vulnerable either because of their age, their health, their lack of experience or knowledge or maybe it’s just because they are less able to protect themselves. What I’m talking about of course are the boiler room scammers and con artists selling you the dream that doesn’t exist. Despite the best effort of the FCA, in my opinion I think that this problem is getting worse, much worse. In fact, I don’t think that a day goes by in my job where I don’t speak to at least one person who has either been scammed in the past or is being scammed right now. However, and as crazy as it may sound, there is something infinitely worse than being scammed and that is not knowing that you are being scammed! The issue is that people don’t want to know when they have made bad decisions, no, let me correct that, stupid decisions. When I see some these dodgy investments and I tell people that they have been scammed unbelievably in many cases I become the bad guy! They don’t want to listen – they want to live in cloud cuckoo land and not believe it, until of course one day they find out for themselves. Imagine this. Somebody that you have never spoken to before cold-calls you out of the blue and you engage in conversation with him (it’s usually a him in case you are wondering). You entertain him thinking that you will never buy anything but then slowly over the course of the next few days and weeks, he becomes your friend. You share your stories with him and he shares his glossy brochures with you. Before you know it he just happens to be near your house next weekend and he wants to know if he can pop in and say hello. Of course, why would you say ‘no’, and the next thing you know, he’s at yours having a cup of freshly brewed cha in your living room. That’s it. It‘s over for you. You may not realise it yet but from my experiences in knowing how these scams work you have already lost money. You may not have parted with any money just yet and you may still be convinced that you won’t but just wait and see what happens. The cardinal mistake you have committed is that you have allowed this con artist into your circle of trust and from there it’s almost impossible for him to get out without one of two major events taking place. Either you see his face on the ITN News under the news story ’Fake conman does it again’ or you have a conversation with me. And let’s be honest, neither of those are likely to happen. So unless one of those scenarios take place, you are destined to lose your money. Why? Because of greed. Greed is in all of us but it needs to be controlled. Whilst I don’t like the idea of stealing a line from one of the classic films on trading of all time, I shall – ‘Greed is good’ or perhaps I should say ‘greed can be good’. You need to think about yourself and greedy if you want to help others. If Warren Buffet wasn’t greedy and didn’t make $90 billion he wouldn’t have been able to give $50billion to good causes and charities. Was ‘greed’ bad for Warren? No of course not. As you long you don’t take from people who need it more than you, and you those around you, then greed can be a very good thing. There’s plenty to go around for everyone after all. But greed in itself is only one half of the equation. The other half is ‘hard work’. You have to work to make money. If you sit on your ass all day, waiting for your phone to ring and then invest when somebody tells you about something that sounds too good to be true but after a cup of tea you are convinced that it could just work, well I have news for you. That was your fault. Sure, the scammer was wrong. He was more than wrong. He’s a disgusting piece of low life but you have to be held to account also. At the very least you were stupid. At worst you were greedy and stupid. I’m sorry to have to be so harsh but it’s important that I get this message across to you. Now of course I know that the scammers are very smart, and that they can be very persuasive but remember that it takes two to tango. If you put the phone down on them then it’s hard to see how you are going to lose your money. I see it every day. Honestly, every single day I hear or see something like this which is why I had to shoot a video about this today. Enough is enough. Let’s all get wise. The crooks are only getting smarter, more sophisticated, more cunning, more daring and more persuasive. That means that you can’t sit still and you need to be one step ahead. And remember the conmen won’t care about trying to trick you if you make them jump through some hurdles. They only want the low hanging fruit, not the one that involves them jumping. So, make them do just that. Make these idiots jump and jump and then jump some more. Until they get tired of jumping and leave you alone. Get them to produce their due diligence documents and run around in circles for you, demand testimonials from other happy clients, ask for their company accounts, their ID documents (passport and driving licence). Trust me, they will soon tire of you. And the genuine ones out there (no genuine firm cold calls you by the way) will provide the information that you requested. Of course you still need to do your own due diligence but that’s not hard. The one thing about scammers is that they are lazy. They don’t want to work. The irony is that they target lazy investors. It’s the world of the lazy – the lazy scammers versus the lazy investors. Get out of the lazy world and you won’t get scammed. If you are unsure if you have been scammed then come and talk to me. I will show you how I do my due diligence and trust me it’s not difficult. Right now I have a number of scammers calling me but rather than turn them away on some poor unsuspecting victim I thought I would keep them occupied so every day I’m making them all jump, they just don’t know it yet.