The biggest ever “boiler room” fraud list recovered by FSA

A ‘boiler room’ fraudster hit-list that contains the names of almost 50,000 people living in Britain has been uncovered.

Those targeted have been notified by the Financial Service Authority (FSA) – in the fourth case of its kind this year alone.

“This latest list is the biggest we have ever recovered and we are contacting every single person on it in the hope we can stop people losing money,” said Margaret Cole, of the FSA.

“Even if only one in 10 we contact heed our warning it could mean around £96m is not invested in these scams.

Boiler room fraudsters target potential investors by telephone and attempt to sell them non-tradable, overpriced or even non-existent shares.

“Boiler room fraudsters often sound like the real deal so it is easy to be drawn in by their professional and high pressure sales tactics.

“In reality however, the shares are worthless or do not exist and the money is lost forever,” the FSA added.

The scam costs the UK a reported £200m a year and the average victim an estimated £20,000

The FSA alert warned consumers to:

• hang up the telephone if they receive an out of the blue call offering them shares;

• check the FSA Register to see if the person selling shares is authorised to do so;

• call the company back using the details on the FSA Register to verify their identity;

• make additional checks to confirm that they are dealing with an authorised or registered firm and have the correct contact details, such as checking on the firm’s website, with directory inquiries or Companies House;

• report any company that cold calls them to sell shares to the FSA or the police.