The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has issued a warning to investors about a business trading under the name of a former appointed representative of network Sesame.
Sterling Independent Financial Solutions claims to be registered with the FSA and has a website offering advice on pensions, mortgages and investments.
Although the name, address and FSA number provided are legitimate, they actually belong to a former appointed representative of Sesame which was acquired by Dorset-based Sands Associates six years ago.
It no longer trades under the Sterling name and Simon Ereira, director of Sands Associates, which is also an appointed representative of Sesame, said the FSA had contacted him about the bogus firm and said it was attempting to shut the website down.
Ereira added: "It's quite scary isn't it? Luckily it's not the main vehicle of our company but this could happen to anyone. They've used the company name, the former address and the website looks legitimate."
The FSA's alert warns investors against dealing with the unregistered business and reminds them they cannot turn to the Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme if they have any problems.
The regulator has previously issued a number of warnings about a number of unregistered firms which have traded under names similar or the same as legitimate businesses.
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