With over 900 million active Facebook users, spanning more than 70 languages, it would be an understatement to say that Facebook is popular. With such a heavy user base, the announcement that Facebook will be going public, has taken the world by storm and made the company’s IPO one of the most heavily-discussed ever. It is estimated that Facebook and its shareholders could make more than $13 billion.

As most Fraud Dog readers know, the fraudster goes where the money is. Being that Facebook is the hottest IPO in years, it no doubt will be exploited by scammers. Some investors have already been contacted by phony investment firms promising that they have a “special ability” to obtain shares. Because of Facebook’s popularity, people can identify with the company and may be tricked into buying Facebook shares which actually do not exist.

Bottom line: DO YOUR HOMEWORK! If the seller of these Facebook shares asks you to wire money or write a check out to an individual, instead of a financial institution, you’ve got a red flag that maybe this is a scam. Additionally, check out the seller via the Florida (or your particular state) Office of Financial Regulation’s website, as well as, the FINRA website.

New IPO’s like Facebook are ripe feeding grounds for the fraudster says leading fraud expert, Linda Webb, AKA The Fraud Dog. Webb says please do you due diligence on any new IPO’s, especially one as big as Facebook, and watch out for those who claim to have shares, or can guarantee you shares. Be sure you fully understand the risk you are getting involved with. Opportunistic fraud is on rise, and there are more players jumping in everyday with more fraud scams on the horizon. Remember, whatever is “hot news” for the day, is where the fraudster will go to offer some form of fraud to make quick cash.

To report potentially fraudulent activity, contact Linda Webb aka The Fraud Dog, leading fraud expert at 1-855-FRAUD-DOG.

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