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Your personal anti-fraud guide

You’ve been offered a seemingly attractive investment?

Here are 5 steps to follow to help you determine possible fraud. Read the guide to learn more about fraud at each step.

Red-flagging Financial Fraud

You are offered a financial product, e.g. an investment or insurance. Are the person and the firm he works for authorized to sell the product?

View the Register of firms and individuals authorized to practice.

Red-flagging Financial Fraud

Were you provided with full written information on the investment?

Also useful is the brochure Prospectuses made clear.

Is the investment being offered too good to be true?


When you were offered the investment, was this typeof statement made to you?

  • I have it from a reliable source that this investment
  • will skyrocket. It’s a sure bet.
  • The company will soon be publicly listed.
  • It’s imperative that you invest today: tomorrow will be too late.
  • All my clients have put their money in this investment.

Did the person offering you the investment behave in the following manner?

  • Refused to say which firm he worked for or tried to change
  • the subject after providing only scant information.
  • Asked you to keep matters secret.
  • Told you that a regulatory agency had “approved” an investment.
  • Pressured you to invest in the proposed offering.

For a copy of the brochure Red-flagging financial fraud, contact the AMF Information Centre.

Classic frauds

Here are two classic fraud tactics. To learn more, see 14 classic frauds in the guide.

Ponzi scheme

The Ponzi scheme can take several forms. It consists of taking an investor’s money to pay bogus returns to other investors or simply to reimburse investors who want their money back. Fraudsters can also give the false impression that the investment is generating good returns and that you will have no problem recovering your money.

Affinity groups

Fraudsters associate with people who share the same beliefs or even interests in order to build their credibility. They won’t hesitate to boast about their wealth and success, at first subtly, then with greater fanfare. They forge ties with you, after which they propose “outstanding investments.” In some cases, they will ask you to keep the matter quiet, as this is a golden opportunity they only want to share with their friends. In reality, the fraudster will be the only one to benefit from this golden opportunity!

Other publications are available under fraud prevention.

You want to report possible fraud? Contact the AMF Information Centre. The information could be useful for AMF's efforts to better protect consumers.

Detecting and avoiding financial fraud and reporting suspicious activity

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