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FBI Confidential: How to avoid falling victim to fraud

“If it seems too good to be true, it probably is,” Michael Pickett warns in an interview with FBI Confidential host, Debbie Dujanovic.

Pickett, a Supervisory Special Agent with the FBI, appeared on FBI Confidential to discuss white-collar crime. During the interview, they zero-in on fraud and Pickett gives his advice to help you avoid falling victim.

Affinity fraud is a type of fraud that Utahns are extremely susceptible to, according to Pickett. He defines it as a type of fraud that uses “the bonds of trust that are created through their community, religion or through an ethnic group. They take advantage of that trust.”

Here is Pickett’s advice to avoid becoming a victim of fraud:

“Whenever you are looking to invest you have to do your own due diligence.” 

A common mistake victims make is replacing due diligence with trust.

“Never judge a person’s integrity by how they sound.”

Instead, judge them by their actions.

“A lot of times it is the fraudster coming looking for you.” 

Beware of someone coming to you about potential investments, said Picket.

And finally, Pickett brings it back to the golden rule when it comes to fraud:

“If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.”

Pickett explains the rule with age-old advice: if you are promised a high reward, there will be a high risk involved.

For more deep dives into the FBI subscribe to FBI Confidential wherever you get your podcasts. New episodes are dropped every Thursday.