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Madoff Was a 'Smooth Operater,' Former SEC Official

In the wake of the Madoff scandal, former SEC commissioner Laura Unger called for SEC reform on Monday.

“The market has just gotten far too complex, far too fast moving and far too sophisticated for the agency to keep up,” she said on "Squawk Box."

While the commission needs to embrace technology as a regulatory tool, said Unger, she cautioned investors that they must do their due diligence.

“The government will help but they’re not going to protect you from losing all of your money,” she said.

Unger also said Madoff ingratiated himself with both the SEC and Congress.

“They took great pains to make sure that all the people who had authority of their universe were known to them," she said. “He was a smooth operator; it's a brilliant, criminal mind.”

Part of the reason Madoff was able to fool investors, said Unger, was his reputation as a choosy advisor.

“You would be lucky to be able to invest with him, if you were one of the chosen and the few,” she said. “And that way, nobody dared question his credentials or the fact that the performance was so consistent.”