Financial Services Regulation Coordinating Committee (FSRCC) has warned members of the public to beware of illegal financial operators who lure people with promise of mouth-watering returns on their investments.
The FSRCC an agency of government whose membership is drawn from the Central Bank of Nigeria, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), among others, said the activities of the illegal and unlicensed financial operators who lure and defraud unsuspecting members of the public through this promise of spurious high returns on investment was on the rise.
In a statement issued in Abuja, the FSRCC said it “wishes to draw the attention of the general public to the worrisome increase in the activities of the Illegal Financial Operators (IFOs) which portends grave risk to public confidence and the stability of the Nigerian Financial System. The FSRCC in its continuing efforts to end the scourge of IFOs in Nigeria, hereby issues the following advisory:
“The general public is advised to refrain from dealing with unlicensed or illegal financial operators, who lure and defraud unsuspecting members of the public by offering extra-ordinary returns on investments as bait”.
It enjoined members of the public to visit the websites of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other relevant member agencies of the FSRCC to verify the registration and license status of such companies and schemes before investing in them.
Activities of spurious companies which promise unsuspecting member of the public of extra-ordinary returns on their investments have been on the rise in recent months, if not year, in Nigeria. Many of them often offer high yield of up to 100 per cent or more on investment within a short period, sometimes as short as one week. Thus it is not uncommon to see some of the faceless companies promising investors that they will get N100,000.00 if they invest N50,000.00 within one week; or even N2 million if they invest N1 million.
The Committee appealed to members of the public to report any individual or entities suspected to be involved in such nefarious activities to the law enforcement agencies.
It assured that financial regulatory agencies shall continue to carry out all necessary due diligence before registering/licensing any operator under their regulatory purview. In addition, it stated, agencies shall refer to relevant supervisory authorities for confirmation before finalizing on any registration/licensing application.
It implored member agencies to engage in regular sensitization campaigns on the threats posed by the activities of Illegal Financial Operators.