The Financial Conduct Authority in the UK has issued a warning against Index Limited t/a 4XPremium (https://4xpremium.com) – a clone website that falsely claims to operate under a legit company, licensed by the regulator.
FCA warns that sometimes scammers use details of authorized companies to convince people that they work for a genuine, licensed business.
“These scammers typically cold-call investors to promote shares, property or other investment opportunities that are non-tradable, worthless, overpriced or even non-existent. A new tactic has seen fraudsters using the name, ‘firm registration number’ (FRN) and address of firms and individuals authorised by us to suggest they are genuine. This is what we call a ‘clone firm. Fraudsters usually use this tactic when contacting people out of the blue, so you should be especially wary if you have been cold called”, FCA also notes.
Most companies, providing financial services in the UK, are obliged to be licensed by the FCA. That is the reason some fraudsters claim to represent authorised firms. They may even copy the website of a legit, licensed firm, making subtle changes – for instance to the contact number or address.
Have in mind that fraudsters often claim to be from overseas companies listed on the official FCA Register, as these firms do not always have their full contact and website details listed.
“Be aware that the scammers may give out other false details or mix these with some correct details of the registered firm”, FCA warns.
FCA strongly advise all potential investors to deal only with financial firms, authorised by them, and always to check the official Register to ensure those companies really have a license.
FCA also reminds all customers that if they give money to an unauthorised company, they will not be covered by the Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) if something goes wrong.