How to protect your money

0
13
Call us


CEDI

Protection is one strategy that seeks to secure one’s property from attack and harm and from being stolen.

When you protect, you keep your assets from harm, injury, damage or loss and from being stolen.

In the real world, property and money should be protected because there are always thieves in the neighborhood. They would even try to steal things you have on your mind.

Therefore if you spend your time and use your brains to make money or to create something you need to protect it so that thieves, pirates and similar gangs do not get richer at your expense.

The discussion here centers on how these below can make you poorer if you do not handle them carefully and tactfully.

The best ways to protect your money in order not lose it or let be taken away from you is to be financially literate and intelligent about the following:

Government agencies

Government agencies such as the Police, tax authorities, social security managers, local assemblies, food and drugs authorities, standards authorities, driver and licensing authorities and public regulators that have the power to sanction or make you or your company pay penalties must be handled diligently without going against their rules to incur extra costs. Avoid doing illegal businesses and going against rules and regulations especially if you are an entrepreneur so that you do not pay unnecessary penalties and fines. Penalties and fines reduce the value of your money and your wealth. 

Advance fee schemes

This happens mostly when a victim pays some cash ahead to another person, or group or company in return for something of greater value, say a loan, contract, employment, gift, investment and so on. 

It is very difficult to know it could turn out as scam as some of the people involved seem trustworthy. It is a very complex world and sometimes, real fake transactions look real genuine. Sometimes, it is so difficult to distinguish between good and bad, fake and genuine transactions. Many conmen use advance fee schemes to dupe people without performing their part of the contract or agreement. 

Many unsolicited post mails, faxes and email scams come up in the form of advance fee scams. They are confidence tricks that they use on people to dupe them of their money or some other property. ‘Money-doubling’ transactions and black money scams fall under this practice. Be financially intelligent and be on the lookout before you pay out any fee in advance to fraudulent people without getting the value in return. Make sure you protect your money from advance fee receiving conmen.

Prize and lottery frauds

The scammers would contact you through social media, phone call, email, post mail or some means to say you have won a prize in a lottery you entered into or so something like that. There are many legitimate sweepstakes and lottery contests all over in the world and many enter into them sometimes knowingly or unknowingly. Everybody wants money and the good news of winning a handsome prize sounds sweep to the ear. They come in many forms, like, winning a trip, cash, but mostly before you claim your supposed winning prize you are asked to pay in cash a small charge, which they could term as tax, insurance costs, bank charges or even courier charges. 

When payment is made to them your winnings are stalled and further reasons are given for the delay and then more money is asked from you till you are fully ripped off or till you become aware of yourself and pull out.

Most of the victims of sweepstakes of lottery prizes are themselves greedy people, who want to reap where they have not sown. You know you have not bought a lottery ticket or entered into any winning contest yet you want to claim some winnings. There is nothing for something under the sun.   Protect your money from lottery scammers before you are ripped off.

Financial Institutions

Many financial institutions are established to protect our money and our finances. However not all of them do that diligently and do it well for a very long time. There have been many stories of bankers and some financial management companies or investment houses collapsing with investors’ funds and governments are called to bail the depositors or investors out for them to have back their money. 

 It is not every bank or financial management company or an investment house that you should put your money into it because some of them cannot protect your money for you. They cannot be entrusted with money to manage when they do not have the credibility, experience, tenacity, drive, legal ability and financial capacity to swim against or with the tides all year long and before long they will disappear with your hard earned cash.

In Ghana, about seven (7) universal commercial banks were closed down and about fifty-two (52) fund management and financial houses were also closed down. About three hundred and forty-seven (347) microfinance companies were also closed down by the government within the same period because the government said those companies and banks had violated many rules and regulations and did not have the financial capacity to continue to be in business for the foreseeable future.

Depositors and investors were placed at the sad end of this banking saga without recourse to having their money and till now some have not got part or full payment of their hard earned cash placed with those banks or investment houses. You can protect your money from some of these banks or investment houses with proper due diligence into the activities of any bank or financial house before placing your money with them. It is extremely difficult sometimes to know but some due diligence still needs to be made.

Make sure you can protect your money. Any amount of money lost to a company not abiding by the rules and regulations could have been used profitably elsewhere. 

Sales Agents

These are mostly salespersons and mainly middlemen, in between the buyer and the seller, who make sales, genuinely or fraudulently for their principals and get paid commissions. Agents are mostly not investors, themselves yet many buyers or investors depend on the advice of the salespeople or middlemen alone to venture into investing some investment products only to lose much money later. Investment advice should be sought from investors or professional investment advisors, who are investors, themselves it not you would not protect your money. 

Stock, insurance, real estate brokers or agents make sales for commissions and many are not expert investment advisors. One cannot therefore make any sound investment decision based on their advice alone. Make sure you can protect your money. Any amount of money lost through a singular piece of bad advice of an agent could have been used profitably elsewhere. 

Businesses

I always define a business in my own way as any legal activity that generates income for you with or without your presence. A true business does not need you, the investor to be around before it can generate income for you if proper controls are put in place. I have also learnt that there are no bad investments but there are bad investors, so you cannot protect your money if you invest into unknown territories and expect to make good returns. 

You are likely going to lose. Many business ventures or startups do not live to see their fifth anniversaries and the reasons are countless but many are tied to poor due diligence and lack of adequate knowledge of the terrain before venturing into the sector. Make you sure you can protect your money. Any amount of money lost into setting a business could have been used profitably elsewhere. 

Litigations

 Litigations at the courts either take away your money or bring you some money. Many times litigations are time-consuming and waste of other resources. There are some people who are so litigant that, they would go to court on the tiniest of any frivolous argument or misunderstanding. There are many good lawyers and attorneys waiting to charge legal fees for any issue brought before them. Many cases at the law courts take some good time before they are finally settled. 

Many a time, cases start from smaller courts and progress to a supreme court or the highest court of the land when parties in the case do not understand one another and do not give up fighting each other. Many clients, would be behave like hungry lions, they together with their lawyers would give never up till they have got their preys or even end up given their lives to the courts for costs to be awarded against them. 

In all legal fees must be paid. Money is being spent with no corresponding revenue and clearly the signs would show there will be not profits as the case would be lost. Apart from criminal cases where you might not be able to decide for yourself properly because the law must take its course, civil cases should be followed proactively and with the mind but the not with the heart. 

Business transactions are legal transactions and should be entered into with the end in mind so that so that no surprises can surface to make your lose money. Remember, lawyers would always charge you a fee and that is money you would be losing if you do not win the case unless the lawyer offers to do it free of charge for you. 

What they call ‘Pro bono’ (for the public good). It is good to enter into a ‘contingency fee arrangement’ with your lawyer, so that a percentage is paid as the case begins but if you lose you do not pay anything again but you if you win you pay the remaining percentage. This is still good if you know you have a winning case, else you cannot protect your money.

Sometimes, it is wiser to resort to Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to trash out some issues rather being at loggerheads at the courts. It is not always the case one must win. Sometimes, there must a win-win situation and you still go home satisfied.

Litigations can let you lose a whole empire. Be careful you do not lose so much. Protect your money from litigants and from attorneys who, advise you to resort to the court always.

Marriages

God created marriage and the beauty of it cannot be explained. However, many marriages have become curses more than blessings. Many marry for money and would do everything do make money from their marriages. 

What is disturbing is where you are married because of your money and the gold-getter gets their gold and you are dumped. So marry with the end in mind and marry by protecting your property. You could be rich without holding anything in your name. 

Your companies and trusts could be the owners of your property and even the house your sleep could be owned by your trust or company which rents it to you. In marriages, where everything is in your name, you could lose greatly if you lose your marriage and it is both the male and female, who could be at the receiving end of the bitter pills from a divorce. 

One of the best ways to protect your property in marriage is to have a Prenuptial Agreement between the partners before marriage. This happens in many advanced countries like in the USA. This agreement could protect both the man and the woman’s property if the marriage fails. 

Protect your money from bad marriages and from bad people, who love you because of your money. It is glorifying and pleasing when one has a perfect marriage partner, whom either one can entrust their empire into their hands and still sleep soundly without ever having bad dreams about the accountability, good use, sustainability and protectability of the property. 

Many marriages end the moment the money ends and sometimes the end of the money could be secrets siphoning by one of the partners to the marriage. Watch out!

Fake Family Members.

Fake or sometimes real family members show up during the death of rich people and most show up with their intention to hold claims to some property of the deceased rich person. You can protect your money from some of these fake family members by having a will or a testament or have a trust to entrust your property with so that there is planned distribution or management of your estate after your death. 

In this way, hardly, would something be left uncounted for to be scavenged by fake family members after your death. This also relieves surviving family the stress of legal issues and spending the little left on legal costs when they could have been prevented. Protect your money from fake money members and control your money even in your grave. 

Bandits

There are thieves that would steal your property or money physically. In Ghana, we say if there is nothing in this world, we would not close our doors when we sleep at night. Your property or money should be secured and protected from thieves. In this age of technology, you do not need to keep plenty of cash with you in your car or office or in the house. Business transactions should be made using credible financial intermediaries for payments or receipts so that evidences could be traced when the need arises. Bandits come in many forms and from many different directions. Some want your credit or debit card details, some want your bank account details, some want your car keys and some want your mobile money pin. Some want your property in your house and some even want your money in your pocket. There are many pick-pockets in town, protect your money from being stolen.

Home Food 

In many parts of Ghana and I believe it is the same in many other parts of the world that it is cheaper to eat home food. Mostly, it is healthier too. You can protect the little you have by eating at home to save you some coins. If you take into consideration the costs of electricity, gas or charcoal and ingredients for cooking, it costs less in total for say a month to eat at home than to eat from a restaurant. Any expense that takes away more money from you with less corresponding value coming in for you does not help you protect your money. 

Ponzi schemes

This is simply like robbing peter to pay Paul. Older depositors get their returns from the deposits of new customers and it works that way till it crashes and the unlucky ones lose. Charles Ponzi is the first known person to have started this business in the 1920s though the practice predated him. They promise higher interests on the investments from their clients. They take new investments from new clients to pay the existing ones and the practice continues till they do not get new clients, then the system crashes down and customers lose their money.

Pyramid schemes

This builds on the principles of ‘introduce more people’ to earn more on mostly non-product selling ventures. The more people one introduces the more the system says one would earn. It dwells on the introduction of more people into the game. Multi-level marketing (MLM) companies use a similar approach but they concentrate on product sales while pyramid schemes concentrate on introducing more new people. 

Pump and dump schemes or market manipulations.

These operate mostly in the stock exchange markets. They fake news and use fictitious financial reports to give good pictures of some companies to make (pump) the prices of those companies’ stocks or shares go up then they sell their stocks or shares at higher prices, thereby dumping them on enticed buyers, who would end up holding valueless stocks.  By the time you get to know you have been deceived they would have made their gains or money and gone. Protect your money from stock market manipulations.

Pre-IPO Investment frauds. 

IPO-stands for ‘Initial Public Offer’ of shares or stocks of a private company yet to be listed on the stock exchange market. Investors are eager to buy the shares of especially profitable private companies before their share offerings are made known to the public. Scammers take advantage of this to lure potential investors into buying Pre-IPOs with fake recommendations from con stock-brokers, polished emails with glorified messages with attractive websites and fake financial reports of a Pre-IPO company. Protect your money from fraudulent IPOs transactions.

Fake charities

One of the most satisfying things to do is to give back to society genuinely and without expecting anything in return. In giving it is expected the true receiver will receive the gift to help them solve their problems but sometimes gifts end up not given to the one who truly needs it. 

Fraudulent people are everywhere and they do not have mercy for anything even needy people. Fake charities and fraudulent disaster support schemes have bedeviled the charity sector and have restrained good-hearted people from giving wholeheartedly. 

Genuine charitable organizations and not-for-organizations suffer today for lack of adequate donations greatly because of the activities of fake charities and fraudulent disaster support schemes. It is excellent to give out willingly but before you do give out to a good cause do some due diligence to check the authenticity of the charity organization or group or person before donating. Protect your money to give out to a true needy cause.  

COVID-19 Scams

COVID-19 is devastating and deadly and everybody fears it. In COVID-19 situations, many want to offer support to others. However, they are many out there who also want to take advantage of the pandemic to cash in on people fraudulently. 

COVID-19 Scams come in many forms such as supply scams, promising supply of health and relief items. Loan advance fees as the corona was ravaging, many needed money to support themselves, so the fraudsters offer loans with advance fees before your loan is granted. 

Tenants in mortgage houses are lured by false foreclosure bailout scammers, who tell you they can reduce your monthly mortgage payments for you at a fee so you do not experience a foreclosure. 

“As at July, 26, 2021, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had logged more 561,000 consumer complaints related to COVID-19 and stimulus payments, nearly three-fourths of them involving fraud of identity theft. These scams have cost consumers more than $505 million, with a median loss of $373.

The scammers are using phishing emails, robocalls, imposter schemes, text messages, social media posts and juicy websites. It is reported that these scammers closely monitor the news headlines and adapt their games as the pandemic intensifies. 

In the USA, it is reported that several states were holding vaccine lotteries as a way to encourage more people to take the vaccines or Covid-19 shots. Experts warned against receiving phone calls from suspected swindlers, responding to text messages or reply to emails that asked for fees or promised goodies to the corona victims or their relatives. 

Bad people take advantage of vulnerable people to swindle them even when they are in dire situations. Watch out for such people during this corona period. Corona vaccines are not sold to individuals, so do not be deceived to pay for it anywhere in the world. Protect yourself from the virus and protect your money from the scammers. 

 

©2021, Godwin-Xavier Ayeebo

[email protected]

www.finalti.com



Source link

Call us