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19-Member Alliance Including SEC, FINRA, SIPC, and State Securities Administrators Highlights Top Tips for Investors To Protect Themselves Against Ponzi Schemes, Other Swindles

WASHINGTON, D.C.//January 27, 2009//How can investors protect themselves from financial losses in a Ponzi scheme of the type associated with Bernard Madoff? What red flags should they look for to alert them to a possible Ponzi scheme? What do investors need to know in general about spotting and avoiding investment fraud?

Today, the nonprofit Alliance for Investor Education (AIE) outlined 12 of the best Web-based resources for investors to educate themselves about investment fraud, particularly Ponzi schemes. The Alliance's new "Avoiding Madoff-Like Ponzi Schemes: What Investors Need to Know to Protect Themselves" is available at http://www.investoreducation.org/ponzischemes. AIE is the organization of the United States' leading financial-related foundations, nonprofit organizations, associations and governmental agencies.

Alliance for Investor Education President Dallas Salisbury, who also serves as president and CEO of the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) and chairman of the American Savings Education Council (ASEC), said: "Investors can become victims of fraud at any time, but they need to be particularly vigilant when they are seeking to recoup market losses in turbulent markets. We want to make sure that Americans know where to find the best available information so that they can have the confidence to continue investing, while avoiding Madoff-style Ponzi swindles."

The new "Avoiding Madoff-Like Ponzi Schemes " section of the AIE Web site features the following 12 top resources for consumers:

  1. The Alert Investor: Ponzi Schemes - North American Securities Administrators Association.

  2. Lessons to Be Learned from Madoff Scandal - Financial Planning Association.

  3. Ponzi Schemes - Securities and Exchange Commission.

  4. Scams and Swindles: An Educational Guide to Avoiding Investment Fraud - National Futures Association.

  5. How Can Investors Avoid Investment Fraud - CFA Institute.

  6. Financial Predators on the Prowl - National Endowment for Financial Education.

  7. Fighting Fraud 101: Smart Tips for Older Investors - Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

  8. Five Ways to Avoid Getting Madoffed - Financial Publishers Association.

  9. Affinity Fraud: Beware of Swindlers Who Claim Loyalty to Your Group - North American Securities Administrators Association.

  10. Fraud Awareness and Prevention - Commodities Futures Trading Commission.

  11. Investment Fraud - Investor Protection Trust.

  12. Can I Check the Background of My Advisor? - TomorrowsMoney.org/SIFMA Foundation.

For an overview of the rest of the best investor education resources on the Web from AIE members, go to http://www.investoreducation.org.


Founded in 1996, the Alliance for Investor Education Web site at http://www.InvestorEducation.org provides investors with access to a full range of information they need to make wise investment decisions. The 19-member Alliance for Investor Education is dedicated to facilitating greater understanding of investing, investments and the financial markets among current and prospective investors of all ages. We pursue initiatives for education and join with others to motivate Americans to obtain objective information and increase their knowledge and understanding of investing..

Full members of the Alliance include: American Association of Individual Investors, EBRI/ASEC, BetterInvesting, CFA Institute, Financial Planning Association, Financial Publishers Association, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Investment Company Institute Education Foundation, Investor Protection Trust, Council for Economic Education, National Endowment for Financial Education, National Futures Association, NYSE Euronext, Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Consumer Protection, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and the North American Securities Administrators Association are the governmental and quasi-governmental advisors to the Alliance.

CONTACT: Ailis Aaron Wolf, (703) 276-3265 or .


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