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Scams using binary options are unfortunately quite common, as you can tell from our list of fraud brokers and services. If you are concerned about falling prey, this guide explains how to avoid scams in the UK.
Are Binary Options a Scam?
In short, no. Binaries are, in our opinion, a good product. There are, however, unscrupulous brokers and other service providers out there preying on uninformed traders. This is due to binaries being largely unregulated and unmonitored when they first came to the market – which thankfully has changed a lot in recent years. But with scam artists still out there, what can consumers do to avoid a binary options scams and focus purely on their trading? Read this tutorial on scams and only trade with trusted brokers!
A scams list may not actually be that useful though – operators are closing and re-opening so often that maintaining the list becomes a full time job. A better choice for consumers is to spot the warning signs, and if there are any doubts at all – simply move on to another provider. A list of scams can only protect you from threats that exist today – learning how the con artists operate and mislead consumers can keep you safe for years to come.
There are a number of methods by which the scams associated with binary options will try and make money. There are however, also some pretty obvious red flags that can pre-warn consumers that all might not be well. As ever, the old adage “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is” applies. If you have encountered any of the below, I would advise treading very carefully – and if in any doubt, leave that particular broker – there are plenty of legitimate, trustworthy brokers. There is no need to take risks with any company that you may have doubts over.
Top 3 Trusted Brokers
For those that simply want to avoid scams and start trading without reading this whole guide, go with any of these brokers:
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A service called MyChargeBack.com offer a consultancy service to help victims recover their money. They offer a free service to let you know if you have a case. Things like unpaid withdrawals, or unauthorised payments can be claimed via banks or credit card companies, and this firm specialise in dealing with those organisations. The range of services varies based on each case, but they may be able to help:
How to Avoid Scams
Look out for the warning signs listed below!
A reputable broker is unlikely to solicit new business by making cold calls and phoning you out of the blue. It is likely that any call made in this way, will involve unrealistic claims about binary options, and potential profits to be gained from trading them. These might include the promise of immediate, high returns, and downplaying any risk.
In addition to telephone calls, some operators may also email directly, in some cases, suggesting an account has already been opened. Any of these methods of getting in contact is an immediate warning sign. Hang up, and delete any mails.
One source of frequent issues is via deposit bonuses. Dishonest brokers will often have some extremely unethical terms. These might include tying in the initial deposit until a certain amount of trades have been met (turnover requirements). They will include the initial deposit (not just bonus funds). Effectively making the deposit their money as soon as it is handed over. Be sure to read these terms before taking a bonus, or making a deposit.
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This warning includes automated robots and signals, but also managed accounts, where an account manager has promised massive profits. There is an obvious conflict of interest for these account managers. If you make a long term profit, the brokerage makes a long term loss on your account. An account manager, employed by the broker, is very unlikely to have your trading interests at heart. While they may argue otherwise, letting someone else trade for you is very likely to end in losses. These managers can also encourage traders to invest way beyond their means, which is particularly dangerous. Binary options are a high risk / high reward investment. The risks should never be hidden from you by your broker or account manager.
‘Make Money Online’ marketing
Many of these warning signs are related – this form of marketing again hides the risks – just like the cold callers and account managers. The “Make money online” and “Get rich quick” marketing surrounding binary options is grossly irresponsible. There are numerous websites, with high production videos that look very appealing. They will suggest making money is easy, possibly even suggesting they copy famous investors. These are all scams. Any promotion that hides, or downplays, the high risk nature of binary trading is not being honest. Binary options are not a way to make easy money, and should not be sold this way. This form of advertising for binary options is generally the most dangerous for the consumer. If you encounter marketing of this kind, do not proceed.
A funnel is a website that will drive traffic to a broker. As a visitor to that site, you may not even be aware you have been redirected to a broker. These funnels generally operate the “get rich” marketing described above, but not always. The issue here is that the consumer will be passed to a broker, who they know nothing about. Having visited the funnel, the new customer will get a call from a random broker asking for a deposit. While this may sound odd to those who have not fallen victim to it, the effective selling of the binary options scam by the funnel website, will mean many people are duped.
Some brokers will include a line within their terms along the lines of: “Our prices may not reflect those of the actual market”. Unfortunately it will not be worded as clearly as that, as the implications are obvious – they set their own prices. If the broker is the counter party to any trade, and they also set the prices, it will be very very difficult to ever make a profit with that broker. Clients are trading against the broker, and they decide the closing prices. One of the two parties will make a loss – and it will not be the broker. Research the terms of trading and beware of any references to settlement figures based on anything other than real world prices.
So those are some key warning signs that should make any potential new trader stop and question what they are being told. If you have come across any of the above, identify the broker involved – and trade elsewhere.
In addition, new traders might try and carry out their own ‘due diligence’ on a brand. Even this however, might carry risk. The reason is, as well as the scam operators, there are review sites that are also dishonest. There are a couple of ways that consumers can protect themselves and find the trustworthy reviews. The first method is in looking at the offerings elsewhere on the review site – if other scams are being promoted, then the reviews are not credible. Ask these question of the site:
- Is there a proliferation of robot ads?
- Are there promises of high returns?
- Is there adequate risk disclosure?
- Can you contact the site, or site owners?
The second method is regulation. In the UK, the Financial Conduct Authority regulates some binary options brokers. This only happens where the broker offers a form of trading already covered by FCA regulation – Contracts for Difference (CFDs) for example.
The reason this is important is because FCA regulated firms have to be careful about who promotes them too.
If a binary option site lists FCA regulated brands (as we do!), this indicates a level of credibility and protection. That site must be completely honest about the high risk nature of binary options, and it must have accountable individuals, based in the UK who operate it. If it does not, then the FCA firms would not allow their brands to be marketed by them.
Here however, is another level of complexity. Some binary options brokers have sought to register with the FCA. This is not the same as being regulated by them. In order for a firm to be regulated by the FCA, they need to offer additional forms of trading, not just binaries. A brand offering only binary options will not be fully regulated by the FCA. This is because binary options are currently regulated and licensed by the UK Gambling Commission. So the list of binary options brokers regulated by the FCA is actually very small.
FCA List of Unauthorised Brokers
In addition to the services below, the FCA have published a list of firms who are not authorised to trade binary options in the UK. While stopping short of calling them scams, the list provides a picture of firms who are prepared to break the law (by offering unregulated trading). They are almost certainly best avoided. The list can be found here:
The Brit Method
The marketing in use here is an obvious red flag. Videos that suggest over £500k has been made in under a month are about as obvious as it gets. Unfortunately the claims are not true. This is an outright scam, avoid the “Brit Method” or any associated schemes. These include “Jason Taylor” and any “millionaire maker” scheme linked to that name, or the Brit Method.
The Brit Method is a scam that has been used before. Here is what you need to know to protect your money;
What Is The Brit Method?
The Brit Method promises to be a binary options trading strategy that can make you hundreds of thousands of Dollars within a few weeks. Unfortunately, it is the latest reiteration of an old scam.
The Brit Method is nothing new. It previously was called the Aussie Method and the Canuck Method, and each time the site had to close due to its bad reputation. Even the guy who supposedly invented the genius trading style is the same.
It is always the same stock picture, just the name changed from Jake Mason to Jake Pertu and now Jason Taylor.
There are many fake testimonials on the website, but make no mistake all of them are made up statements with stock pictures of people who never heard of the method.
Similarly, all the promises made by the Brit Method are lies. The site essentially promises immediate, unlimited gains, but provides little information on how it wants to accomplish this goal.
The site also promises to get you started for free, which is a lie, too. After you complete your free registration, you are refused access to the system unless you deposit $350. But even if you make the deposit, you still wont have access because there is no system. The money is gone, and you will never see it again.
Avoid the Brit Method at all costs. Also, be aware of all future version of the scam. In all likeliness, there will be a German Method and an American Method and they will very likely to use exactly the same methods to con people.
Again, the sales pitch is an obvious red flag. This is a scam, stay away.
The scam suggests that clients can enjoy wealth by following a method created by Warren Buffet. An investor famous for taking long term positions, this fraud has absolutely no connection with Buffet himself.
The process involved visitors being forced to join a particular broker (another scam tactic explained above) and make a deposit in order to get access to a “system”. No system exists, and traders will not get any funds returned. Avoid.
The good news here is that the Ultimate4Trading website has been blocked for UK visitors. The operation is dishonest and should be avoided.
Another scam which again, is thankfully blocked in the UK. Once again, the promise to “get rich” is at the forefront of the marketing but the whole operation is a scam. To the point which even the website is now a haven for malware. Keep away.
Instagram & Facebook
Many scams promote themselves on Instagram and Facebook. Most will fall into the categories listed above. The mainstream media have also been duped themselves in the past, including the Daily Mail. These promotions or accounts make wild claims of the profits that can be made, backed up with images of flash cars and other trappings of success. It is all a lie and these operations are to be avoided at all costs. If these people really could turn your £2,000 into £8,000 in a week – why would they need to advertise on social media? They could simply make as much money as they needed from the markets and go and spend their time on the beach. Screenshots are easy to fake – and they never need to show the losing trades.
Anything promoting a ‘get rich quick’ route using binary options is untrustworthy, full stop. Remember also that Martin Lewis (of MoneySuperMarket fame) is considering legal action because Facebook are not doing enough to remove ads claiming to be backed by him. To repeat his quote “Martin Lewis does not do ads“. If an advert mentioned him, avoid it at all costs – it is almost certainly a scam.
Below are some brokers for which we have received credible reports of poor customer care, or worse. Again, many of the tactics used are covered in our article on avoiding scams – this list is unfortunately not exhaustive so if any of the actions below sound similar to other brokers you have come across, stay away from them – and let us know.
Many of the worst brokers have been thankfully shut down, but always be aware of using unregulated brands unless you are able to verify their quality. Not all unregulated brands are untrustworthy, but it does mean more ‘due diligence’ is necessary.
Bonus terms lock in the initial deposit until turnover requirements of x30 are met. Your deposits are yours until you choose to trade them. A broker should not block withdrawals of your deposits before it has even been traded. Avoid.
Opteck have now closed for business. The tighter regulations introduced by CySec (who monitored Opteck) have left the firm with no option but to cease trading. Increased regulation is helping the industry by squeezing out the firms that used misleading marketing, or deception, to earn money from clients.
Boss Capital were a popular broker which accepted US traders. A lack of strong regulation enabled them to operate using questionable methods. They are another firm that have closed as a result of improved regulation.
StratX were a firm brought to our attention by a disgruntled customer (see the testimonial page). The firm use cold calls, account managers and make withdrawals very difficult. Not recommended.
Another firm we have received much correspondence regarding is CFDStocks. They employ most of the tactics discussed above, including cold calls. Most contacts we received say an account manager encouraged larger and larger deposits before disappearing.
Binary Options Scam
It’s sad, but it’s true. Scams are something that dominates the binary options trading market. They can be in any form – robot services or scam brokers. You have to be always prepared and cautious against all sorts of binary options scams. For your convenience, we have prepared a scam list along with highlighting the name of scam brokers.
On this page, you can find the list of non-recommended binary options brokers. Anyway, it doesn’t mean that all the brokers on this list are fraudulent and steal money. We can just not recommend them for another reason. After a click on the brokers‘ logo, you can see the detailed information and the review. In the case you see a mistake, do not hesitate and sen dus a comment. We really value your help. Our aim is to be constantly adding new and new brokers, both reliable and on the other hand also the brokers, who have lost our trust.
|Broker||Status||Withdrawals problem||Scam phone calls||Still in business||More information|
|Not recommended||No||No||Yes||NOT RECOMMENDED
|SCAM Software||Yes||Yes||Yes||NOT RECOMMENDED
|Unfavourable offer||Yes||No||Yes||NOT RECOMMENDED
Some, however, are not worth anything and eventhough they seem nice, we don’t recommend them. It migh even happen, that they will never pay out your earned money. That’s why you should always check, whether a broker you chose, is not on this list.
Avoid binary option scams
Do not get hooked and do not trade with brokers listed above. On the contrary we recommend that you look at our list of recommended brokers https://xbinop.com/binary-options-brokers/ to which you don’t have to be afraid to entrust your money. All brokers on this list are reviewed by us and they comply with all the rules and regulations of regulatory organs as is FCA or CySEC.
Binary Trading Scams
When something new launches, such as any new financial instrument, a whole lot of businesses try to get involved. Some of the businesses may be trustworthy but some may not be. This holds true in a case of binary options too. Being widely popular and famous, binary trading can be accessed by anyone. In the past, there were no ground rules indicating who can trade and who cannot. Also, it was not under any particular regulatory authority, thus making it easy for unscrupulous operators to take advantage of.
However, now the situation has changed. Better regulations are being observed now, which helps in revealing scams easily. Frequent online reviews and strong feedback systems ensure transparency. But you also have to be alert in case any shady outfit wants to trade with you. You can read more about binary options regulations here.
There are several red flags to watch out for. And some of them are highlighted below that will help you choose a reliable binary options broker platform:
What Exactly Does A Scam Mean?
From giving false information with the intent of luring into something to eloping away with all your account balances, the meaning of scam can be varied. There is no particular meaning of scam as such. It might be the binary options broker with whom you are trading is not unscrupulous but the service that he provides is fraudulent. Like, their firm doesn’t let you withdraw funds on its due date or his advice are dishonest. So, at any cost, you should always avoid these kinds of binary brokers for your own safety and security.
A scam that should be avoided, too, is when people call you and tell you they will manage your funds for you. You should never trust anyone with your funds, be the master of your own destiny!
From what was said above, the main issue doesn’t lie with the concept of binary options trading but with the principles of binary options brokers and other providers. So, what you need to do is chalk out a proper plan and do the needful homework before choosing any respective platform. Go through the reviews, provided they are reliable. Fake brokers reviews are also quite common; therefore you should not entirely make any decision based on the reviews. Testimonials and reviews published on a broker’s website are often compromised, so don’t form an opinion based on that. In fact, trader forums can also be manipulated by a particular binary broker or his website.
The best way to choose a brokerage firm is by relying up on independent, personal and comparative reviews. Select review sites that only allow real-life users to directly contact and file a problem with a particular broker, thus guaranteeing credibility and transparency to the issue. Have a look at the list of our recommended brokers for example. There’s a discussion beneath every single review.
The US recognize binary options instruments as financial instruments. So do European courts. Depending on the locations and the countries, binary trading falls or not falls under any particular regulatory authority. Some of the authorities are CFTC in the US and CySec in Cyprus.
To inspect a broker’s reliability quotient, regulatory status can serve as a good indicator for those who want to avoid scams. When a brokerage firm falls under a particular standard or regulatory authority, he is bound to maintain transparency.
Don’t Believe In ‘Too Good To Be True’ News
The trading on binary options should be done in a straightforward way. For this, the platform of trading should be reliable and quick. The profits can be predicted by carefully analyzing the market and reading the future market conditions while understanding future strategies. However, if a somebody with a binary options strategy comes to you and assures you 95% success rates then that can turn out to be a false assurance. No one can say whether you are going to strike profit or loss, as everything depends on speculation.
Read the Terms and Conditions Carefully
Having a good idea about binary trading options makes thing easy and simple. In any kind of trading, transparency is an important constituent. Read the documents carefully and give special importance to the needlessly complicated portions about a withdrawal of funds. When you are denied access to your deposits up to a certain number of trades, you need to know your position well. Guidelines regarding initial deposits should be understood fully; after all, you are investing your hard earned cash, so you deserve to know about what you are getting into.
Bonuses are also given from time to time and are widely associated with deposit retention. Though CySec has banned these kinds of deposit match bonuses, non CySec firms are at liberty to use them. However, you should always check the binary broker’s terms and conditions thoroughly.
A fair and transparent benchmark should be followed by the brokers to set up prices. This benchmark should be based on real world market situation. If by any chance broker decides to set their own prices then you must assume that those figures have been tampered with. These unscrupulous brokers will try their level best to force you to pay higher prices, hence you must be well-guarded.
For more guidance and information on regulations and features, you can anytime read our independent reviews.
Disputes of varying kinds are reported in several online forums about trading. The complaints can be filed against the brokers directly or through online forums (Such as 24 option forum). The issues can be myriad, from encouraging poor traders to over trade to giving faulty information to price manipulation. Now, if you are dealing with unregulated brokers then little help can be provided. For all these factors, it is always advisable to establish relations with trusted binary options brokers from a country in which you reside.
Though scams have become synonymous with poor services yet you cannot ignore dishonest trading practices committed by some of the unreliable brokers. And if you have any doubts, don’t trade with that particular broker. There are many honest brokers, just find one for yourself from here.
Robot and Signal Scams
Robotic services are mostly either scams or not at all recommended.
How to find out a trading strategy scam?
The Internet is flooded with handsome deals of doubling your money. You will find numerous ads, posts, and articles on how to make you rich overnight. But your conscience and think is that really possible. With such deals, obviously, there might be some hidden factors and issues which need to be considered.
Here are some tips that might help you identify a scam:
Being good in strategies doesn’t mean you have the ability to be a good trader. To become a proficient trader, you need a proper system. When you plan something, you have to devise a plan of how to enter the market as well as exit the market along with managing your money. You also have to consider the present market condition and in accordance to that, you have to do everything. In a case of a strategy, the above said things will hold true except the thing said about market conditions. Binary option strategies may not be right for trading as it includes many missing information.
As marketers are sharp and shrewd, they can easily name a product as a system and give it a complete structure. Hence, you need to watch out for several factors that can make your product a complete waste of money.
Also known as the opaque black box, a boxed system is something that fails to make you understand how a strategy works. Suppose you have bought a product or system that says when you should trade but it doesn’t specify any underlying reasons.
If a trader doesn’t know the reasons behind some happenings then it is pointless to buy such products. And if such products fail to operate then you have nothing to do. Though you may gain with this product preliminary but in the long run it may sound too effective.
Think Wisely Before Going For 90% Win Rates
Some ask whether 90% win rates are possible or not. Well, the answer is you can enjoy 90% win rates but at the same time, you can also lose money with 90% win rates. However, stats can easily be manipulated with tampered figures. Some says that you can make $500 per day but in reality, they hardly make any sense.
Before investing in anything, make sure you read between the lines. What is highlighted and what is not. To understand how well you will perform you need to gather few pieces of information, like account size or capital invested, amount of profit per trade, amount at risk on each trade, percentage return, win/loss ratio, biggest loser, biggest winner, average loser, average winner, number of trades and time period during which the strategy was tested.
Apart from all these, there are some other metrics which can help you. Now, if the company from which you ask for these bits of information doesn’t help, it is time to be suspicious.
Avoid Single Direction Trading Systems
Never choose trading platforms that operates only in one direction. As markets rise and fall, you will obviously want to be a part in both the trends.
A Clear Chalked Out Conclusion
A good product or service should not only satisfy you by fulfilling the desired purpose but should also make you understand behind-the-scene modules. By having clear glimpses of the reasons, people can start trading on their own. There is no point in making customers dependent on the product itself throughout.
Don’t believe in the statistics that are presented to you. Ask yourself some questions. Use your conscience to make powerful decisions. Never base your judgments on a broker’s past performance. Do your necessary homework and research before buying a particular product. Also, don’t forget to try out a product or service or system before you purchase it.
Have you been scammed? MyChargeBack might be able to help you! Fill the form below.
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Binary Options Scams
Ever since humans have been trying to make more money, there have been scammers ready to take advantage. One of the problems, of course, is that naïve consumers and investors, looking to increase their earnings, can lose everything as the result of a scam. Another issue is that a number of perfectly legitimate brokers and businesses end up being tarred with the same brush and labeled scams because of unscrupulous actions of others.
One of the difficulties is related to binary options scams. It’s important to realize that binary options represent a legitimate way to make money (even though some claim that trading them is a scam), but at the same time it’s important to be careful, since there are scammers out there waiting to take advantage of you.
First of All: Binary Options Trading Is Legit
It’s important to realize that binary options trading isn’t some big scam. Binary options have been traded for a long time, and they are a legitimate way to speculate on market outcomes, and are especially popular amongst Forex traders.
The idea that binary options trading is a scam comes from the fact that the speculative nature of this type of trading means that there is a very real chance of loss. And, it’s an proposition. If you’re right, you end up with profits. But, if you’re wrong, you lose the premium you paid in order to buy the options contract. These losses lead many to think that it is a scam. However, binary options trading is no more a scam than stock trading or Forex trading.
What Binary Options Scams Are Out There?
You need to be aware that there are different scams being perpetrated in order to part you from the money you work hard to earn. Some of the scams are more a result of poor quality software, and poor customer service, than overt scams. For example, a broker might use poor software that doesn’t record orders properly, or has other problems. You might think you are purchasing one contract, but the software says you purchased something else. The result is that you lose money.
Another possibility is that you have difficulty working with customer support when something goes wrong. You might be simply told that nothing can be done as your money trickles away. It’s also important to be on the lookout for brokerages that don’t allow you to withdraw your money, instead forcing you through various hoops, or telling you that you’ve forfeited it in some way.
Be on the watch, too, for sites that are scammers, including fraudulent web sites and “brokers” that disappear after a few weeks.
You Do Need to Watch Out for Scammers
However, just because binary options trading itself isn’t a scam doesn’t meant that there aren’t scammers out there. While there are a number of reputable brokerages that can help you trade binary options, there are also scammers trolling the web, looking for susceptible traders. Before you decide to begin trading with a brokerage, you need to make sure that you are dealing with someone reputable.
Look for a few red flags before you sign up as a client and start trading binary options:
- Guaranteed profits: No one can guarantee your profits. Anyone who insists that you can’t lose money is probably a scammer. There is no “safe” investment, whether you are trading binary options, or investing in the stock market. Stay away from this types of fraud.
- Loose regulatory environment: Check the country the broker bases its operations in. In some cases, the country has a poor regulatory infrastructure and that makes it easier for fraudsters to set up shop. Be wary of brokerages based in countries without good regulatory practices.
- Poor reviews: You do need to be careful of relying too much on poor reviews. You can, though, get a good idea of a broker’s legitimacy by spending time on forums, and looking for information about the broker. There are a number legitimate binary options brokers, and you can usually find them with a search of the Internet, or by visiting the forums. Be suspicious of organizations that not many people have heard of, as well as brokers that have nothing but bad reviews.
As long as you do your homework, and you are careful about the brokers you work with, you should be able to avoid binary options scams. Then, all you have to do is worry about whether or not you are making the right calls when it’s time to trade.
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