I received an email the other day from a client, asking for my opinion about an investment opportunity she had read online.
She had come across an article about a new investment strategy, apparently from Bill Gates.
It purported to 'equalise the world's wealth' with a new 'algorithm-based tool'.
As a socially responsible investor, my client was especially keen to jump on the band-wagon.
The source of the article was, apparently, CNN. It came complete with a video showing Bill Gates talking about the scheme on television in the US.
My client was convinced this was the real deal. After all, with this business success and record of philanthropy, why wouldn't Bill Gates be willing to share such an impressive investment scheme?!
It was, of course, a scam.
A quick read of the article was enough to tell us this was a scam designed to part investors with their money.
We reported back to the client with this conclusion, who remained convinced that Bill Gates was genuinely behind the investment scheme. After all, there was video evidence to back up their claims.
A few hours later, my client emailed again, having discovered it definitely was a scam. The reason she was now convinced and agreed with our assessment? The man in the video was not Bill Gates but a Bill Gates impersonator!
How low will the scammers go to steal your money? Pretty low!
Using an impersonator to create a video like this and making the article look like it came from CNN are just two techniques used by investment scammers to create an air of credibility.
One of the valuable services we offer to our clients is a second opinion when it comes to checking out investment opportunities like this.
We can't claim to be able to spot every scam in the world (nobody can), but our experience and expertise allows us spot most of them.