Please find below details of recent evidence of 'boiler room scams', guidance on what to do if you have received a call and advice on how to avoid unsolicited calls in the future.
We have been advised by shareholders, on a number of occasions over the past three years, that they occasionally receive telephone calls or written communications which appear to originate from one or more of the following sources:
- Overseas addresses;
- Phone or written correspondence by companies offering to buy their shares at varying inflated prices (in some instances the calls or correspondence claims that Taylor Wimpey plc is the subject of a takeover bid);
- Offering to acquire shares of Taylor Wimpey for up to £15 each for an unidentified ‘major buyer’;
- Requesting an up-front payment for a ‘bond’ as security;
- Telling the shareholder that a ‘non-disclosure’ arrangement would be required;
- From a firm of solicitors named "Fraser Brown" or "Frazer Brown" and quoting a telephone number 0845 123 8304;
- Referring to "Club Class Holidays" or other holiday/timeshare type ventures e.g. in Gran Canaria;
- Calling himself “Mr. Chan” and claiming to represent Robinson Capital Partners of New York;
- Referring to the death of someone with the same name and seeking assistance with the transfer of money
The nature of these communications is not clear however they are likely to be some form of ‘boiler room scam’or fraud. Further details on such scams and the techniques used are set out below. Please note that Taylor Wimpey plc would never make unsolicited calls to shareholders.
If the offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is! Don’t be pressured into making a quick decision.
Take care and treat any calls or mail with suspicion. Even professional looking websites can be easily created.
Further details on such scams and the techniques they adopt are set out below, together with details of how to report such calls.
We advise our shareholders to be extremely wary of such calls and correspondence. You should make sure that you only deal with the Company itself (Taylor Wimpey plc) or financial services firms that are authorised by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (‘FCA’). The FCA keeps a register of authorised firms, which is available on their website. Authorised firms are unlikely to contact you out of the blue with an offer to buy or sell shares. To check whether an enquirer is authorised under the FCA; to report a suspected fraudulent enquiry; or for general guidance; please see the FCA’s guidance on its website.
- Take care and treat any calls or mail with suspicion. Even professional looking websites can be easily created. Make sure you get the correct name of the person, organisation and their contact details.
- Protect yourself and check out any investment thoroughly. You can find out more information about boiler room scams on the FCA website www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart. You can also check if the firm is authorised to do business by the FCA. If you deal with an unauthorised firm, you would not be eligible to receive payment under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.
- You should be aware that if you hold a share certificate, your name and address details are shown on the public register and this is one of the ways that boiler room operators can obtain your details. You can protect your privacy by considering moving your shares into a nominee account.