Canadian securities regulators encourage Canadians to be proactive in preventing investment fraud

ST. JOHN'S, March 4, 2014 /CNW/ - Canadian securities regulators are recognizing Fraud Prevention Month this March by encouraging investors to take early and proactive steps in protecting themselves from investment fraud.

"Checking registration and asking questions when choosing a financial adviser are the first steps investors can take to avoid falling victim to investment fraud," says Bill Rice, Chair of the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and Chair and CEO of the Alberta Securities Commission. "The relationship between adviser and investor is more than filling out forms or ticking boxes. There needs to be an ongoing conversation about the investor's goals and how to meet them with suitable products, while communicating the risks that come with investing."

Securities regulators stress that being an informed investor is the best defence against investment fraud. The CSA website offers several free educational tools and resources for investors, including how to check the background of an individual or firm, what to ask when choosing a financial adviser, and how to maintain a successful working relationship with an adviser.

The CSA also offers the National Registration Search, a tool that allows investors to easily check if a firm or individual is registered to sell securities or offer investment advice in their jurisdiction. Canadian securities regulators will only register firms and individuals that meet specific qualifications and standards.

The CSA is encouraging investors nationwide to participate in Check Registration Day on March 19, 2014. Here's how:

If you discover that the person you are dealing with is not registered, call or email your local securities commission immediately.

The CSA, the Council of Securities Regulators of Canada's provinces and territories, coordinates and harmonizes regulation for the Canadian capital markets. Their mandate is to protect investors from unfair or fraudulent practices through regulation of the securities industry. Part of this protection is educating investors about the risk, responsibilities and rewards of investing.

SOURCE Canadian Securities Administrators

For further information:

Craig Whalen
Office of the Superintendent of Securities
Government of Newfoundland and Labrador
709-729-5661

Sylvain Théberge
Autorité des marchés financiers
514-940-2176

Carolyn Shaw-Rimmington
Ontario Securities Commission
416-593-2361

Richard Gilhooley
British Columbia Securities Commission
604-899-6713

Kevan Hannah
Manitoba Securities Commission
204-945-1513

Wendy Connors-Beckett
Financial and Consumer Services Commission (New Brunswick)
506-643-7745

Tanya Wiltshire
Nova Scotia Securities Commission
902-424-8586

Daniela Machuca
Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan
306-798-4160

Janice Callbeck
The Office of the Superintendent Securities, P.E.I.
902-368-6288

Mark Dickey
Alberta Securities Commission
403-297-4481

Rhonda Horte
Office of the Yukon Superintendent of Securities
867-667-5466

Louis Arki
Nunavut Securities Office
867-975-6587

Donn MacDougall
Northwest Territories Securities
Office 867-920-8984