Remember Bernard Madoff? Investment scams are rampant. You can get an email telling you how one person made a million bucks in less than 3 months and how you can do the same. Is this too good to be true? Yes and here are a few ways to help you avoid becoming another victim.

There is always a risk whenever a business opens. Many do not survive after 6 months of operation so if the con artist tells you that there is no risk on your part, forget about it.

Some con artists will outweigh the risk with the gains by telling you that you will make profits fast. The truth is no one can predict that and those that claim to be low risk are usually the opposite.

If you are interested in what they have to offer, get details of this in writing preferably documents that you can review with all the information you need. If they try to pressure you on the spot to join, don’t because this is a red flag that usually lead to fraud.

Who doesn’t want to make money? Surely everyone wants to but you have to understand what you are getting yourself into. If the person wants you to invest in the stock market, do you have any idea how this works? You should do some research first to know the differences of each one.

Be very careful when dealing with commodities. While it is true that oil, gold, metal and a few others increase significantly, you have to remember that these go down as well depending on the market conditions which the person cannot control.

The email you received will probably tell you to visit their website. Somewhere below, there are probably some testimonials written by strangers who are thanking that person. Well, don’t buy it because that con artist probably thought of some fictitious names and wrote those testimonials themselves.

Stay away from offshore investments because they are risky. If you think you can avoid paying for taxes, think again because you are still required to declare it otherwise you could be charged with tax evasion.

The best way to avoid becoming a victim of an investment scam by email is by not opening it. If you do not know the sender, don’t trouble yourself because this could be a virus.

If this was forwarded by a friend, conduct a background check by getting in touch with your state securities regulator, the Securities and Exchange Commission or the Better Business Bureau.