According to the RCMP, residents have recently been targeted with binary option scams, which they say are usually offered online. The scam promises high returns with low-risk, using a wager method similar to gambling by “betting” on how well assets will perform within a timeframe.
On average, residents who fall victim to binary option scams lose more that $20,000 according to the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC).
The ASC lists these tips to help protect yourself from scams:
- Be cautious when asked to provide personal information and credit card details over the phone and internet.
- Research an investment opportunity and ask advice from an independent third party.
- Before investing, ask for information on the investment. Check the registration and enforcement history.
- The Canadian Securities Administrator (CSA) encourages investors to visit Are They Registered.
Inspector K.C.A. (Allan) Lai, Acting Officer-in-Charge of RCMP “K” Division Federal Policing for Southern Alberta says, “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 say there are currently no registered binary options dealers in Alberta and businesses must register in the provinces they do business in.
If you have been approached by a binary options company or believe you have been the target of a securities scam you can contact:
- The ASC at (877) 355-4488 or email: [email protected]
- Tthe Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre 1-888-495-8501 or report it online.
Last year, there were a total of 8,317 cases of fraud reported in Alberta from January to October.