Warning to shareholders.
“Boiler room” scams
1 September 2011
It has been bought to our attention that our shareholders are
being contacted by someone purporting to be from a US investment
firm offering to buy William Hill shares. We do not consider this
to be a legitimate approach and would advise shareholders to remain
vigilant at all times. Please see the warning below for further
information on what should do if you receive any unsolicited
If you have any queries, please e-mail
21 May 2010
The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has recently reported a
dramatic rise in the number of enquiries they have received
relating to share scams. The "boiler room" scam has developed over
recent years and there has been an increase in reports of overseas
fraudsters contacting shareholders to sell and buy shares using the
names, registration numbers and addresses of authorised firms and
individuals in an attempt to convince consumers of their
These fraudsters, commonly known as "boiler rooms", have
prompted the FSA and City of London Police (CoLP) to issue a new
warning and they have contacted those they believe to be affected.
A copy of the letter that has been issued by the FSA and CoLP can
be found on both FSA and CoLP websites.
Last year the FSA received calls from over 3,100 people who had
been contacted by boiler rooms. Of these, 734 had become victims,
losing an average of £24,000 each.
Different types of scams
- Offers to buy shares you already hold, often at a higher price
than their market value.
- Encouragement to sell your blue chip shares in banks and
financial institutions to invest in green or high technology shares
marketed by the boiler rooms.
- Offers to buy shares in US companies that turn out to be
"Regulation S" (or Rule 144) shares ie they can only be sold to
non-US citizens, and often have other limitations.
- Offers of help from "recovery rooms" who offer assistance to
those defrauded by boiler rooms. They approach victims of boiler
room fraud and, for an upfront fee, promise to review their case
and obtain reimbursement from a European Court fund or other legal
Avoid becoming a victim of fraud
- Remain vigilant – be very wary of any unsolicited advice,
offers to buy shares at a discount or offers of free company
- Check that anyone who is offering to sell your shares is
registered with the FSA. You can check this at
- Call the company back using the details found on the FSA
register to verify their authorisation.
- Inform our Registrar Computershare on telephone number 0870 703
- If calls persist, hang up.
If you have received any unsolicited investment advice or think
you may have been contacted in relation to a possible scam, the
matter should be reported to the FSA by calling 0845 606
1234, or visiting