March: Fraud Prevention Month - Caution with regard to social media


Montréal - The Internet and social media are valuable tools for investors, offering access to a wealth of investment information in terms of advice, subscribing to financial newsletters and participating in discussion forums. However, the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) reminds Quebeckers to exercise caution about information posted on these platforms, which also attract fraudsters.

While, for the most part, social media are used for legitimate, well-intentioned purposes by individuals and businesses, they can also be a breeding ground for fraudsters because they make it possible to:

  • Easily reach a large number of potential victims;
  • Communicate with potential victims anonymously or using a false identity;
  • Conduct market manipulation activity by spreading false rumours about certain investments in order to artificially drive up their value and sell at a profit;
  • Post hyperlinks directing victims to fake sites seemingly identical to legitimate sites.

It is difficult to prove the good will or identity of someone you only know through social media. That's why the AMF invites you to exercise caution about suspicious solicitations and to review your privacy settings on your social media accounts. It also recommends never disclosing personal information such as your home address, social insurance number, personal identification numbers (credit/debit cards) or your passwords on social media. It also invites you to test your level of vulnerability (available in English soon) to fraud on social media.

To find out more on fraud techniques and social media, visit the related section under the Prevent Fraud heading on our website.

AMF on Twitter

To better safeguard against fraud, learn more about financial products and quickly learn of investor warnings, you can now follow the AMF on Twitter @lautorite This link will open in a new window.

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

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