June 15, 2010
Securities regulators urge Canadians to help prevent financial abuse of seniors
Calgary – Securities regulators across the country are urging Canadians to be aware of and report financial abuse involving seniors as part of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15.
The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) is one of many organizations recognizing and supporting the international effort against elder abuse in all of its forms, including the under-recognized and under-reported form of elder abuse - financial fraud.
Elder abuse involving investments or securities can occur in a number of ways:
- an investment offered to a senior that is fraudulent or simply unsuitable for the senior’s risk tolerance;
- theft of funds by those in a position of trust; or
- aggressive sales tactics used by sales representatives.
“While anyone can be a victim of investment fraud or an unsuitable investment, seniors have less time to recover from a financial loss,” said Jean St-Gelais, CSA Chair and President and Chief Executive Officer of the Autorité des marchés financiers (Québec). “That’s why the CSA provides Canadians with resources to help seniors learn how to make informed investment decisions and avoid investment fraud.”
Whether you are a senior, a family member or a caregiver you can take action and prevent financial abuse of elders:
- Have a conversation about financial matters with your family or someone you trust. Talk with each other about prevention and protection from investment fraud including ways to be prepared in advance for the possibility of being approached with a scam;
- Take time to investigate every investment opportunity or sales pitch as well as the person promoting the investment before handing over money. If unsure about an investment, consider seeking out independent, third party advice; and
- Learn to recognize and avoid investment scams. Visit the CSA’s website (www.securities-administrators.ca) to find important information and helpful resources about fraud prevention.
Specific CSA fraud prevention resources for seniors include:
- Protect Your Money: Avoiding frauds and scams
- Scam Artists Pursue Adults Over 50
- Sandwich Generation: Are you caught in the middle?
- Boiler Room Scams: Could you be vulnerable?
The CSA also reminds anyone who suspects or knows of an investment fraud to report it to their provincial or territorial securities regulator. Reporting potential scams may help prevent other seniors from becoming victims of investment fraud.
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day was spearheaded by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse in 2006 and is recognized by thousands of international organizations and communities around the world. For more information, visit http://www.inpea.net/weaad.html
The CSA, the council of securities regulators of Canada’s provinces and territories, coordinates and harmonizes regulation for the Canadian capital markets.
For more information: