The Financial Conduct Authority is the conduct regulator for 56,000 financial services firms and financial markets in the UK and the prudential regulator for over 18,000 of those firms. The FCA regulates organisations providing financial services in the UK, including banks, stockbrokers and financial advisers; organisations selling, promoting or advising on shares require the FCA's authorisation to do so.
As investment fraud becomes ever more sophisticated the challenge to keep shareholders aware of the risks becomes increasingly important. As part of their ongoing campaign to raise awareness the FCA have recently launched "Be ScamSmart" (http://www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart) which is specifically targeted at the tell-tale signs of a scam.
Shareholders are advised to be very wary of any unsolicited advice, offers to buy shares at a discount or offers of free reports about the Company.
The Financial Conduct Authority ("FCA") provides the following guidance should you receive unsolicited investment advice:
Make sure you get the correct name of the person and organisation who has called; and
Check that they are properly authorised by the FCA before getting involved with them. You can check to see if they are registered with the FCA at (http://www.fca.org.uk)
The FCA also maintains on its website a list of unauthorised overseas firms who are targeting, or have targeted, UK investors and any approach from such organisations should be reported to the FCA so that this list can be kept up to date and any other appropriate action can be considered. If you deal with an unauthorised firm, you would not be eligible to receive payment under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. The FCA can be contacted by completing an online form at: (http://www.fca.org.uk/consumers/complaints-and-compensation/how-to-claim-compensation)
Please report the matter through the relevant links below:
The FCA directly on 0800 111 6768 (freephone) or 0300 500 8082 from the UK, or +44 207 066 1000 from abroad. We are open Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm and Saturday 9am to 1pm. Or by visiting (http://www.fca.org.uk)
Sterling's registrars, Link asset services, on 0871 664 0300