The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) alerts the financial services community and members of the public to a fraudulent advance fee scam in which the DFSA has been impersonated.
The scammers promise to provide services to customers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which include:
• Applying for an investor number on behalf of the customer;
• Attending to “eBroker Services Registration”;
• Updating the customer’s investor details with the markets;
• Attending to the customer’s family transfer/ownership transfer requests;
• Creating a “sub-portfolio under the same brokerage account” for the customer; and
• Providing an “audited confirmation letter of securities ownership” to the customer.
For these services, the scammers charge fees (in one case amounting to SAR690,000) and send a payment authorisation form so that the customer can transfer the amount charged for the fees. A copy of the payment authorisation form can be found here.
The payment authorisation form used by the scammers contains a fake DFSA stamp. The DFSA does not use such stamps, and the fake stamp has been used by the scammers to make the scam seem authentic. The DFSA’s name and logo have been used in the stamp without permission and for a malicious purpose.
The DFSA also informs you that the DFSA does not authorise or approve any transfers between firms or members of the public. The DFSA strongly advises that you do not respond to any communications regarding this scam, and under no circumstances should you send any money to them.
The DFSA suggests that firms and individuals can avoid being scammed by:
• checking the relevant regulatory status of a person before doing business with them;
• only doing business with firms or individuals you trust. Dealing with people you have never met may carry a higher risk;
• be particularly cautious when receiving unsolicited communications; and
• obtaining independent professional advice before entering into any investment or transaction.
The DFSA has a page on its website dedicated to alerts which it has issued about scams. All alerts issued by the DFSA may be accessed by going to: ALERTS
The DFSA has also issued warnings and guidance about the common types of scams perpetrated on consumers. For more information on these scams, please go to: HOW TO AVOID BEING SCAMMED
The DFSA encourages consumers to refer to the list of regulated Firms and Authorised Individuals licensed by the DFSA that is available on the DFSA's: PUBLIC REGISTER
If you have any concerns about the authenticity of any correspondence or documents that purport to be issued by the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), DFSA or a DFSA regulated Firm, you should direct your concerns to the DIFC on Tel:+971 4 362 2222 and to the DFSA via the DFSA Complaints function on: COMPLAINTS
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