Published On: Mon, Jul 17th, 2017

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Warn Against Binary Options Scams

The Rogal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) published an announcement warning against binary options scams. The RCMP’s warning comes amidst a flurry of reports from authorities and watchdogs cautioning investors against binary options fraud.

According to the RCMP,  there were 8,317 cases of fraud reported in Alberta between January and October of last year.

photo/ Gerd Altmann via pixabay

One of the most common scams in Canada last year was investment scams, which included solicitations of any kind for false or misleading investment opportunities. These scams promise higher-than normal returns. Consumers wind up losing most or all of their money as a result.

In a statement, Inspector K.C.A. Lai said: “Fraud has a devastating impact on individuals, families, businesses and to our economy. The RCMP believes that the best way to fight these types of crime is through awareness because the more you know about a scam, the less likely you are to be victimized. Albertans should immediately report any incident to the appropriate authorities.”

The RCMP cautioned that binary options scammers have been targeting Albertans, and Canadians in general. On average, Albertans who fall victim to these scams lose $20,000.

photo TaxRebate.org.uk

One 61-year-old man from Alberta committed suicide after losing CAD300,000 using binary options services. Two-thirds of his losses was attributed to the 23Traders.com platform, which is Israel-based.

The RCMP compared binary options trading to gambling in its warning. It also pointed out that companies offering securities legally must be registered in the province. There are no registered binary options brokers in Alberta, the RCMP says.

An online trading broker may contact potential investors through telephone, email or social media. Investors are often directed to websites that appear to be professional and legitimate. Once on the website, investors are asked to register, provide credit card information and start trading.

Scammers are typically based in other countries and use fake names.

Last year, 800 complaints were made related to binary options scams in Canada. The losses are estimated to be in the millions.

The RCMP asks Albertans to contact the Alberta Securities Comission if they approached by a binary options company, or if they have been the victim of a securities scam.

Along with binary options scams, the RCMP cautions Albertans to be careful of wire fraud scams. These scams occur when investment brokers and financial institutions receive fake email requests from people who appear to be existing clients.

Merchandise and romance scams are also common in Canada. Merchandise scammers sell counterfeit goods at discounted prices. Romance scammers use dating sites and social media platforms to lure in victims and convince them to send money for a variety of reasons.

Author: Jacob Maslow

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