[Techtaffy Newsdesk]

The Securities and Exchange Commission charged an Illinois-based investment adviser with offering to sell fictitious securities on LinkedIn and issued two alerts in an agency-wide effort to highlight the risks investors and advisory firms face when using social media.

The SEC’s Division of Enforcement alleges that Anthony Fields of Lyons, Ill. offered more than $500 billion in fictitious securities through various social media websites. For example, he used LinkedIn discussions to promote fictitious “bank guarantees” and “medium-term notes.” The postings resulted in interest from multiple purported potential buyers.

The SEC’s investigation of Anthony Fields was conducted by Donna K. Norman and Julie M. Riewe.