Companies you should not deal with
List of unlicensed companies
If you have received a call or email from
someone you don't know offering you a great investment opportunity
or a loan, be very wary. The caller may be a scammer trying to take
your money. Scams come from companies operating overseas and in
Australia. Australians lose millions of dollars every year to scams
and you do not want to be the next victim.
Protect yourself by checking this list of companies and
individuals that are not licensed by ASIC. If the company that
called you is on this list, do not deal with them.
Check the list of
The businesses listed below have made unsolicited calls and emails to
Australians and do not hold a current Australian Financial Services licence or
Australian Credit Licence from ASIC. Although new names are added
as quickly as possible, this is not a comprehensive
Names recently added to the list (most recent at the top):
See also the list of fake regulators and
exchanges. No genuine government regulators exist under the
names on this list.
scammers target Australians
Many scams come from companies based overseas. These scammers
target Australians because ASIC does not have international
jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute them. However, ASIC can
notify the regulator in the scammer's country so that the regulator
may pursue these illegal activities.
See investment scams for more detailed
information on how these scams work and what questions to ask to
check their legitimacy.
See banking and credit card
scams for more information on these types of scams.
What if a name is not on the
Check for a licence
If you have been phoned or emailed by an investment company or
offer a loan by a company that is not on the list of unlicensed
companies, you should search for their name on ASIC Connect's Professional Registers to see
if they are licensed.
If the company or person is not licensed, do not deal with them
them. Reporting them allows ASIC to warn others.
Remember that although most overseas businesses selling overseas
investments to Australians usually require an Australian Financial
Services (AFS) licence, there are a few exceptions.
Australian companies need an AFS licence to legally sell
investments in Australia.
Check overseas lists
Overseas companies can be regulated by the securities commission
in their own country. You can check who regulates them outside
Australia by going to the IOSCO (International Organization of Securities
Commissions) website. Then you can contact the appropriate overseas
regulator or search its website to ensure that a company of that
name is registered or licensed by them.
You can also check
IOSCO's investor alerts where you can search for overseas
companies that are not authorised to provide investments services
in the country that has issued the alert.
Check the address
You will need to double check that you are really dealing with a
legitimate company by checking the company's address held by the
regulator and also cross checking it in a phone directory. This is
to ensure you are dealing with the company itself and not an
impostor pretending to be that company.
See investment scams for more details on
how to check the legitimacy of an investment scam.
How ASIC can help if you have been
ASIC wants you to report all investment and loan scams. Even if
we cannot prosecute the scammers, we may be able to warn other
people. You should also warn your family and friends to stop them
from becoming victims. Please note that generally, ASIC cannot help
you get your money back if you have sent it to an overseas company
as these companies are out of our jurisdiction.
To find out what we can and can't do when you tell us about a
scam, go to our report a scam webpage.
Checking our unlicensed companies list is one of
the first steps you can take to protect yourself from scams.
Last updated: 17 Mar 2017