British Columbia Securities Commission

British Columbia Securities Commission

November 06, 2014 13:30 ET

B.C. Securities Commission Renews Campaign to Fraud-Proof B.C. Adults

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Nov. 6, 2014) - The B.C. Securities Commission today launched the second phase of its long-term social marketing campaign, Be Fraud Aware, to raise awareness about the warning signs of investment fraud. Building on the success of its initial multi-lingual, multi-award-winning fraud awareness campaign launched in 2011, the BCSC aims to make further progress on the road to fraud-proofing B.C. adults.

"Our goal is to change people's attitudes and beliefs about investment fraud and their own vulnerability," said Brenda Leong, Chair of the BCSC. "We want British Columbians to fraud-proof themselves by recognizing and avoiding investment fraud, and to support our enforcement efforts by reporting investment fraud when they see or suspect it."

The BCSC has taken its message to British Columbians in English, Cantonese, Mandarin, and Punjabi. Research it has conducted since 2011 shows that the campaign is making inroads: B.C. adults in all three target audiences report that they are very aware of the Be Fraud Aware advertising. They like it, find it relevant and easy to understand, and they recall the key message to be aware of fraud.

A majority of British Columbians who have been exposed to the campaign say they are better able to recognize scams after seeing it. Calls to the BCSC Inquiries line increased 37% in the past two years, leading to more than 30 referrals to the BCSC's Enforcement division for assessment, and 17 cases being opened.

"Investment fraud remains a threat in B.C., especially to seniors and pre-retirees," said Ms. Leong. "Our challenge now is to maintain awareness and increase engagement with B.C. investors so that more people will come forward to report investment fraud if they experience it or suspect it.

The Be Fraud Aware campaign that launched today aims to do just that through digital media, including Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. At the heart of the campaign is an entertaining video and an educational contest that showcase the warning signs of investment fraud.

The video and contest target the general B.C. population in English. The campaign also delivers the BCSC's be aware of fraud message to the Chinese and South Asian communities using online ads.

About the British Columbia Securities Commission (www.bcsc.bc.ca)

The British Columbia Securities Commission is the independent provincial government agency responsible for regulating capital markets in British Columbia through the administration of the Securities Act. Our mission is to protect and promote the public interest by fostering:

  • A securities market that is fair and warrants public confidence
  • A dynamic and competitive securities industry that provides investment opportunities and access to capital

Learn how to protect yourself and become a more informed investor at www.investright.org.

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