Heard of "pump and dump?" Lots of Connecticut investors have.

First you pump them.

Then you dump them.

Your motive: to fleece as many gullible third-party investors as you possibly can by fraudulently overvaluing stocks through hyped proclamations, fake business news, manipulated balance sheets and other means. They buy and you profit, while share values subsequently plummet and leave the individuals who relied upon your perceived professionalism and integrity with worthless share holdings.

Pump-and-dump is a time-honored securities scam (arguably, the term “honored” is a bit dicey when used in tandem with the scheme) that preys upon individuals, families and institutional investors who don’t command the requisite inside information to know that crassly bogus and illegal acts are falsely overvaluing stock offerings.

Material details regarding one classic play on the ruse are now emerging with clarity in what a recent Hartford Courant article calls “a series of Connecticut-based stock manipulations beginning a decade or so ago.”

Reportedly, a stunning 12,000-plus innocent investors — many of them retirees — lost money in the multi-million-dollar scam.

As is often the case, pump-and-dump and other securities fraud schemes cannot last indefinitely, ultimately collapsing and spotlighting principal wrongdoers.

In the Connecticut matter, a number of discredited brokers have now pleaded guilty in federal court and face potentially lengthy prison terms.

Notably, some of those advisers previously worked for industry firms deemed problematic by federal securities regulators. Several of those entities were expelled from the industry by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the self-regulating branch of the SEC that oversees most brokerages across the country.

Securities fraud often entails truly high-value fraud and ensnares — as is evidenced by the Connecticut case — thousands of good-faith investors who entrusted hard-earned money to criminals.

A proven securities law firm that protects investors’ interests can help clients pursue — either singly or as members of a class action lawsuit — meaningful remedies against fraud, including money recoveries in the form of restitution and penalties.

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