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Japan’s FSA Warns Investors Against Rising Cold Calling Fraud From Financial Firms

Japan’s FSA Warns Investors Against Rising Cold Calling Fraud From Financial Firms


The Financial Services Agency (FSA) of Japan has issued an urgent warning concerning a surge in fraudulent schemes involving cold calling. 

This deceptive practice entails entities posing as reputable brokerage or asset management firms reaching out to potential investors via phone, email, or fax to solicit investments in securities or financial products. Following the receipt of payments for purported investments, these cold callers often disappear, leaving investors without their funds or any securities.

The FSA has stressed that legitimate solicitation of securities transactions requires registration or licensing by national regulatory bodies, which these cold callers lack. These entities frequently provide false addresses and claim to operate from countries different from their target victims, making it challenging to track them down.

This cautionary advisory comes in response to reports from overseas investors and cooperation with international regulators who have identified several entities claiming to be based in Japan. Notably, these entities are not registered under Japan’s Financial Instrument and Exchange Act, prompting the FSA to publicly list these unauthorized entities. Investors are strongly urged to verify any firm by consulting this list and confirming official registration before making investment decisions.

In line with the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), which issued a similar investor alert in February 2002, the FSA underscores the importance of international collaboration to combat such fraudulent activities. IOSCO’s statement cautioned against basing decisions solely on cold calls, especially those promising high returns or “guaranteed” profits without regulatory authorization.

Investors are reminded to exercise vigilance and conduct thorough due diligence on any investment solicitations they receive. The FSA’s list of non-registered entities and additional guidance on recognizing and avoiding investment scams are accessible on their official website and linked international resources.

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