Military service members are prime targets for financial scams. When it comes to managing and protecting your military finances, a good rule of thumb is: if an investment sounds too good to be true, then it probably is.
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Sniff Out a Military Scam Before You Get Sucked In

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Military service members are prime targets for financial scams. With regular and predictable military pay schedules, military financial incentives, tax-free military pay, military bonuses, military special pay, added to the chaos of frequent PCS moves, service members and their families become easy targets for criminals looking to take advantage and take your military money.

Even while the Department of Defense issues new rules to protect military families, individual service members must not let down their guard around military financial scam artists.

MILITARY SCAM ALERTS

When it comes to managing and protecting your military finances, a good rule of thumb is: if an investment sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Reports of soldiers being pitched fraudulent high-yield investments with a 50% sales commissions payable up front, or military families being sold high-paying, low-cost phony life insurance policies just before deployments, are rampant. On a larger scale, criminals have been known to target the military in fake real estate Ponzi schemes that have cost service members millions of dollars of military pay. Some criminals and scam artists even place a fake military insignia on their products to trick service members into buying a wide array of supposedly military-endorsed products, ranging from contaminated meats to life insurance to used cars.

There are simple steps to protect yourself and your military family from scams, take control of your financial futures and find fair prices on the services you need.

DO YOUR MILITARY DUE DILIGENCE

It's easy to do a background-check on any company or salesperson found soliciting your military business, by visiting your on-base community service office and speaking with a legal professional. The Fort Hood, TX military base database, for example, cross-references complaints from various departments and the Better Business Bureau. Any companies that have scammed service members in the past can be identified and stopped.

Ask your local base legal-assistance office to review any contract before you sign it. Contracts are often long-winded with legal jargon, and sometimes it takes a legal professional to help you to understand all of its clauses.Take advantage of military services available to help you make wise purchases; check on companies before you purchase their products; and keep your military radar aware of new military scams. Be an educated, and financially protected military consumer at all times.



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