Friend… or scam?

The Canadian Securities Association is warning its users that online scammers are turning to social media applications, particularly dating and relationship apps, to try to scam users out critical information.

“Fraudsters are becoming more sophisticated in targeting Canadians, particularly as we spend more time online. They are increasingly using social media and dating sites to manipulate people into establishing virtual friendships or romantic relationships and then requesting money for investment scams after building trust,

Louis Morisset, Chair of the CSA and President and CEO of the Autorité des marchés financiers.

Chairman Morisset has several recommendations to help Canadians safeguard themselves online. These include:

  1. Be wary of unsolicited investment offers from new acquaintances or love interests.
  2. Never send money or invest solely on the advice of someone you meet through social media or a dating site.
  3. Resist the pressure to jump on a presented notion immediately.

Above all, Morisset’s suggests to slow down and ask questions, especially with respect to social media acquaintances. Fraudsters prey on overwhelming people with jargon and “time-sensitive” offers. Always do your due diligence to keep yourself safe online.