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Central Bank warns public against illegal investment schemes mushrooming on online platforms

Central Bank warns public against illegal investment schemes mushrooming on online platforms

The Bank of Namibia this week cautioned and urged members of the public to refrain from conducting and/or participating in illegal deposit taking activities that are currently operating in the country.

The central bank in a statement emphasised that taking deposits from the public without authorisation from the Bank of Namibia is prohibited in terms of section 5 of the Banking Institutions Act, No.2 of 1998.

“In line with the mandate of the Bank to investigate financial schemes which are operated in contravention of the Act, the Bank has become aware of investment schemes which are increasingly becoming popular in Namibia on social media and other online platforms,” BoN said.

As a result, the Bank and the Namibian Police are currently investigating a number of suspected illegal financial schemes, and once the investigations are completed the public will be informed of the outcome.

“These investment schemes commonly exhibit the following key features: the business is not authorised by the Bank of Namibia to accept deposits from public or conduct banking business; the business involves an investment scheme whereby members are promised high returns within a very short period of time; the promoter of the scheme accepts deposits/investments from members of the public as a regular feature of its business, and further, extends these funds to other members; rapid growth of membership is achieved through promotional messages via social media platforms, most commonly WhatsApp Groups and the business does not sell any products. But the principal feature of the business is a financial scheme, which involves enticing members of the public to invest and enjoy high returns,” BoN highlighted.

Hencesforth the public has been cautioned to refrain from operating and/or participating in such schemes, as they are not only illegal, but are also a risky financial undertaking.

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