Thousands of Albertans fall victim to scams every year and RCMP want the public to be aware of a less familiar one.
Staff Sergeant Les Dolhun says the Binary Option is the main scam people are falling victim to in Alberta.
He says people are given the choice to place a bet on the stocks markets, but are really being robbed of their investment.
“You can place money, essentially wagering that this will happen and what’s actually happening is once you send your money in, normally the person who has induced you to make this bet on the market doesn’t actually do an investment, they just take your money.”
Dolhun says people fall victim to this scam through outlets like email and telephone.
“People can be solicited by a cold call telephone calls, in other cases, people might be on the internet on a website, you know, where there is various advertisements around a news story, or around some sort of information.
You click on that link, it takes you to a very sophisticated website where this is a bunch of information about this type of alleged investment.
“He adds, most victims never recover their money.
“Often these people are based outside of Canada and there’s no recourse. They can be taking peoples money (which is) essentially gone never to be recovered again and unfortunately people can be convinced by these very sophisticated investment scammers to part with substantial amounts of money before they realize there is no prospect they are ever going to see it again.”
On average, people will lose $20,000 to this type of fraud. Other fraudulent acts to be aware of are romance, wire fraud, investment and merchandise scams.
Last year, there were 8,317 cases of fraud reported to Alberta RCMP.