5 Tell-Tale Signs of a Good Investment Scam Mark

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The scam truckNone of us likes to be scammed. However, there are scammers out there ready to separate you from your hard-earned money. It works because there are always those who fall victim to scams. Scammers seem to know just who to target. In a lot of cases, this is because good investment scam marks often have similar characteristics.

Are you an ideal mark for an investment scam? You might be. Here are some of the tell-tale signs of a good investment scam mark:

1. Attend Free Lunches and Seminars

One of the oldest tricks in the book is to offer a free lunch or a seminar. You attend, and you are subject to a pitch. While not all such lunches and seminars are scams, they are effective places for scammers to look for marks. Usually, when you attend these, you are looking for something for nothing — and that means that you might be susceptible to a pitch that purports to give you exactly that. Prime investment scam marks frequent these free lunches and seminars, and invite sales pitches.

2. Think That You Can Get Wealthy without Doing Anything

Scam victims often believe that there really is a way to become wealthy without actually doing anything. If you truly believe that all you need is the “right” system, and then you’re set, without needing to do research or work, then chances are that you are the perfect mark for a scammer.

3. Call 800 Numbers Regularly

If you make a habit of calling 800 numbers regularly in order to get access to prizes, or free items, you could be an ideal mark. Calling many of these numbers to learn about “opportunities” usually just alerts a scammer that you are ripe for the plucking. Once again, this shows the mentality that it is possible to easily become wealthy without putting much in. This type of mentality makes you vulnerable to those who want to prey on you.

4. Overwhelming Desire to Be Seen as an Insider

We all like to feel like we have inside information. However, an investment scam mark takes this to the next level. He or she badly wants to be seen as a player, someone who really knows what’s happening. This tendency can leave a mark vulnerable to tactics that play up the insider angle, or promise that you are getting in on the ground floor. Scam victims often want to be seen as something they’re not, or reach a certain point that they couldn’t normally dream of. This overwhelming desire can lead to clouded judgment and make you a valuable target to scammers.

5. Willing to Trust Someone on Something They Don’t Know About

One of the reasons scammers use others is the trust factor. Are you willing to take a hot stock tip from your co-worker — even though he or she doesn’t actually know much about the market? Are you willing to go along in order to feel “cool” or “help” someone out. Often scammers dupe your friends, family and co-workers. They have no idea, but reel you in as well. If you are too trusting in terms of where you get your investment advice and ideas, you could make an idea mark for a scammer.

What do you think? Are there tell-tale signs that someone is a good investment mark?

(Photo: jepoirrier)

{ 4 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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4 Responses to “5 Tell-Tale Signs of a Good Investment Scam Mark”

  1. Yep – great list! You might want to add someone who has an entitlement mentality, as well as someone who believes conspiracy theories.

  2. Jim M says:

    I would add – someone calling you unsolicited and asking you to invest with them.

    • jim says:

      Anyone?? Stockbrokers have been doing this since the beginning of time to get new clients. So just because someone calls you, you think it is a scam?

  3. Evan says:

    2, 4 and 5 sound like Madoff lol

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