The Utah Department of Commerce warns Utahns to be on the lookout for scams during these times of economic upheaval. Executive Director Francine Giani announced Tuesday that residents can go to the Division of Securities or the Division of Real Estate within the Department of Commerce to see if an investment or real estate deal is legitimate.
"The meltdown on Wall Street has many investors concerned about their retirement and brokerage accounts," said Keith Woodwell, director of the Division of Securities.
He wants investors to beware of those who prey on an investor's uncertainty of the stock market by offering alternative investments. Also, he urges investors to contact his office to ensure an investment promoter is properly licensed in Utah.
The real estate market is another place ripe for fraud.
"Don't jump into a real estate deal or a foreclosure rescue offer without doing your homework," said Mark Steinagel, director of the Division of Real Estate.
He said that although low interest rates and a $7,500 tax credit are attractive to homebuyers, these offers may also attract swindlers.