It’s late, you’re scrolling through Instagram when you should be turning off the lights and going to sleep, but something catches your eye. “Do you want to double your money in days?” The post looks legitimate and there’s even a swish video with a celebrity endorsing it.

Before you click on it, consider that it is very likely to be part of an elaborate scam. Such “get rich quick” advertisements are honed by fraudsters to promise high returns, dressed up with eye-catching images of luxury watches and cars to lure victims.

In the past, investment frauds typically focused on pension scams and older investors targeted via cold calls, but scams are increasingly moving online and growing more sophisticated — and the authorities are finding it difficult to keep up. FT Money explores the threat posed by online criminals and how investors can better protect themselves.

Runaway growth

Charles Randell, chair of the Financial Conduct…

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