Don’t be fooled by scammers posing as legitimate investment dealers warns IIROC

By The IJ Staff | April 12 2018 11:30AM


The Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) has warned Canadians not to be fooled by fraudsters who are attempting to illegally sell binary options while misrepresenting themselves as legitimate investment dealer firms regulated by IIROC.

"The investment firms and individuals regulated by IIROC must meet our high standards and deal fairly, honestly and in good faith with Canadian investors," said IIROC President and CEO Andrew J. Kriegler in a statement issued April 12. "Scammers are showing a reckless disregard for these very standards and are harming investors."

Investors have recently contacted IIROC asking about organizations that claim to be regulated by IIROC, including organizations doing business as: – operated by Westrade Holdings, Inc. and

Retail sales of binary options not permitted

These businesses are not regulated by IIROC and binary options cannot be offered or sold to retail investors in Canada. No IIROC dealers are authorized to sell binary options to retail investors in Canada. Investors contacted by anyone offering binary options should immediately report the incident to their provincial securities commissions.

Binary options typically originate as online scams, through ads on social media that point to seemingly legitimate websites. In some cases, victims receive unsolicited text messages or phone calls, says IIROC.

Bitcoin scammers

IIROC says it has also been contacted by investors about businesses selling bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, claiming to be regulated by IIROC – and they are not. Some ask investors for dates of birth, Social Insurance Numbers and banking information for the purposes of identity theft.

Investors can confirm the investment dealer firms regulated by IIROC by visiting its website:

"We urge investors to avoid 'get rich quick' scams and to be informed and intelligent consumers when shopping for investments or investment advice," adds Kriegler.

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