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The Iowa Insurance Division Helps Prevent Investment Fraud

Iowans should take advantage of the Iowa Insurance Division to avoid being a victim of investment fraud, says Pat Swanson, CFP® and families specialist with Iowa State University (ISU) Extension’s Invest Wisely Project (www.extension.iastate.edu/investwisely). As a part of the Iowa Insurance Division, the Iowa Securities Bureau administers Iowa securities law by regulating and investigating the sale of securities within the State of Iowa and providing for the licensing of securities sales agents and dealers.

Craig Goettsch, director of investor education for the Iowa Insurance Division, explains that education is an important function of the Iowa Insurance Division. “And now Seniors Against Investment Fraud (SAIF) is a new investor education service of the division. This program was funded by money that was received from settlement agreements between regulators in many states and large investment firms. These settlement funds were directed to be used for consumer education about investments.”

The SAIF program provides Iowa seniors with the information needed to recognize investment fraud, to stop it from occurring, to know who to call to report fraud, and to confirm the credentials of salespeople. SAIF works at the grassroots level by enlisting and training Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) volunteers from all over the state of Iowa. The volunteers are seniors and professionals who take an active role in spreading SAIF's message to Iowa seniors. You can find the nearest RSVP volunteer at http://www.iid.state.ia.us/saif/contactrsvp.asp.

According to Goettsch, a key message of the SAIF program is, Before you invest: Stop, Call and Confirm. “Stop the scam from happening. Call the Iowa Insurance Division before taking action. Confirm the accuracy of the information you’ve been given before you proceed. The phone number to call is 877-955-1212. There’s also a Web site : www.investsmartiowa.gov.”

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The ISU Extension Invest Wisely Project provides a series of newspaper, radio, and web resources for investors.  It is funded by a grant from the Investor Protection Trust (IPT).  The IPT is a nonprofit organization devoted to investor education.  Since 1993 the IPT has worked with the States to provide the independent, objective investor education needed by all Americans to make informed investment decisions.  www.investorprotection.org.

 

 

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Updated April 4, 2008