New Brunswick regulator reports increase in suspected fraud

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) on Thursday announced the launch of a task force to more aggressively tackle binary options scams.

The CSA Binary Options Task Force aims to raise awareness and warn investors against dealing with binary options trading firms.

For several years now, various members of the CSA have repeatedly issued warnings about binary options schemes, particularly those carried out by offshore firms, which can be outright frauds.

“The overwhelming majority of binary options sites are rigged to lure in victims with small early returns. In many instances, no actual trading occurs, and the entire interaction takes place for the purpose of stealing money,” the CSA says in a news release. “Once larger sums are invested, the losses begin to spiral, often through unauthorized credit card withdrawals and requests to send money offshore to an unregistered firm. Once a victim has lost their money, it is almost impossible to recuperate their losses.”

Louis Morisset, chairman of the CSA and president and CEO of the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF), says, “In response to this escalating problem, we formed a Binary Options Task Force to raise awareness and protect Canadians from binary options scams and launched a new resource site,, as part of a campaign to educate Canadians about such scams.”

The CSA task force has undertaken a number of important initiatives to protect Canadians from unregistered sellers, including working with online advertisers and mobile companies to eliminate binary option advertising and mobile apps in Canada, working with credit card companies and financial institutions to disrupt funding mechanisms, and teaming up with international organizations and governments to share information and track fraudulent activity.

“Binary options fraud is a leading type of investment fraud facing Canadians today. We want Canadians to know that there are no registered individuals or firms permitted to trade these products in Canada. We are seeing families of every demographic being affected by financial losses due to binary options trading. We want Canadians to understand the financial dangers associated with these products,” adds Jason Roy, chairman of the CSA task force, a senior investigator with the Manitoba Securities Commission (MSC).

Photo copyright: karenr/123RF