What is a pyramid scheme?
Pyramid schemes are illegal and very risky ‘get-rich-quick’ schemes that can cost a lot of people a lot of money.
Protect yourself from pyramid schemes
As well as following these specific tips, find out how to protect yourself from all sorts of other scams.
Do your homework
Pyramid schemes often look like legitimate multi-level marketing schemes. To tell the difference between them, ask yourself these two questions:
If you have doubts about a particular marketing scheme, the ACCC, ASIC or your state or territory fair trading agency may be able to help. As with any other investment decision, you should seek independent advice (for example, from a lawyer or accountant) before you make a decision.
If you believe that an offer is a pyramid scheme, do not take part—it is very likely that you will lose your money and you could be breaking the law. If the offer was made to you by a friend or family member, you should also warn them that they might be involved in a risky and illegal scam.
If you think you might be involved in a pyramid scheme, stop participating in the scheme immediately and contact ASIC, the ACCC or your state or territory fair trading agency. You can do this through the report a scam page on SCAMwatch. You should also warn other people you think may have been approached about joining the scheme.
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