Tuesday, December 13, 2005

PSA: Pump and Dump Stock Trading

Lately I've been getting a lot of spam with unsolicited hot stock tips. According to a recent AP article, similar messages are getting sent out via text messaging to cell phones and IM accounts.

These are all a type of scam known as "pump and dump" trading. What the scammers do is they buy up a bunch of low valued stock, then they spam out messages encouraging people to buy the stock because it's a hot pick. Once enough people buy into the stock, the scammers sell their own shares for a profit. Meanwhile, the people who were tricked into trading typically lose money when the stock price collapses back to its regular value.

It should go without saying that it's never wise to respond to unsolicited messages but, sadly, many people still do. Like any other unsolicited email or message, just delete them without giving them a second glance.

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