Montréal – As part of Fraud Prevention Month, the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is announcing that it will step up its awareness messages aimed at consumers to help them recognize, avoid and report financial fraud.

“Some fraudsters try to take advantage of the vulnerability of people experiencing financial difficulty,” noted Anne-Marie Poitras, AMF Superintendant, Client Services and Compensation. “These fraudsters often take out ads urging people to withdraw money from their RRSPs or their pension funds, promising cash and higher-return investments on a tax-free basis. These investments are often fraudulent and can lead to serious financial and tax consequences,” explained Ms. Poitras.

The AMF also recently launched an initiative with labour groups to prevent laid-off workers from falling prey to financial fraud. By monitoring economic conditions, the AMF can focus on unions representing employees of companies that have announced job losses and mount an offensive to prevent financial fraud. Accordingly, over the past few weeks, the AMF has distributed some 2,000 copies of RedFlagging Financial Fraud and a new information sheet entitled Tax-Free Withdrawals from your RRSP or LIRA – Beware of fraud!

Throughout the month of March, the AMF will expose a number of insurance and securities fraud schemes while reminding consumers of the importance of being carful.

The Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec’s financial sector.

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