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Social media fraud: The influencers promoting criminal scams

On social media, there’s a new type of influencer. But instead of promoting clothing lines and lifestyle products, they promote fraud. 

They flash stacks of cash, hide their faces, and some even lure new recruits by selling guides on committing fraud. 

You’d think these scammers and their illegal products would be hard to find, and once upon a time, they were, hidden in the shadows of the dark web. But not any more.

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Ripple charged by US watchdog

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) today charged leading cryptocurrency firm Ripple for trading ‘investments’ without the appropriate licenses.

The SEC filed that Ripple’s XRP token is a tradable asset and is therefore subject to its regulations. Ripple argues that XRP is a ‘currency’ and does not therefore need to be registered as an investment ‘contract’.

The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission ruled in 2018 that Bitcoin and Ether be excluded from trading exchanges that offer the buying and selling of stocks and bonds yet the Commission also ruled that both (Bitcoin and Ether) could be traded as commodities such as oil and currencies.
Therein lies the myriad of legal complexities.

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BBC News report investment scams quadruple during Coronavirus lockdown

BBC News report today that investment scams have quadrupled since the first Coronavirus lockdown in March as fraudsters continue to develop new and sophisticated tactics.

The report states that fund managers’ websites, documents and products have been cloned resulting in £10m being stolen from UK investors. Fraudsters are even creating fake comparison websites, according to the Investment Association (AI). Investment fraud amounted to £657m in the past year, an increase of 28% from the previous period.

The number of (investment) scams reported since March 2020 quadrupled from circa 300 to 1,175.

Such daily reports reflect the spiral of uncertainty faced by investors but highlight only the symptoms of deceit rather than means to address the cause.

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Travel rules relaxed for Christmas farm turkey workers

A BBC news article published today confirms a relaxation in travel restrictions for workers arriving in England to work on poultry farms to meet consumer demand over the Christmas period.

Approximately 5,500 workers from all areas of the globe arrive on farms in England to help during festive periods, according to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

“The UK meat industry needs access to reliable skilled workers wherever they come from in order to keep the flow of food from our farms to our plates,” said Tony Goodger of the Association of Independent Meat Suppliers.

This may offer a degree of welcomed news to households this Christmas but in the context of security, what checks have been conducted into the backgrounds of the 5,500 people arriving in England to work in a critical control point in the food supply chain?

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How Skripol changed everything

It cost the Russians less than £2,000 to mount a mainland attack on the UK. The result was devastating with town centres closed, hospitals quarantined, transport and businesses affected, a £10m clean-up bill and three people seriously ill with one fatality. More importantly, it created palpable fear in the population.

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Disruptive due diligence

Due diligence reports are fundamentally flawed on the basis that information is acquired from limited data sources. Organisations purchasing due diligence therefore make strategic decisions relative to mergers, acquisitions, procurement or investments understanding just 8% of available information. So what is ‘disruptive due diligence’ when compared to standard due diligence and what advantages does it provide?

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