I want to avoid financial fraud

Are pyramid sales illegal?

You're encouraged to invest in something that will make you lots of money. Better still, if you recruit other investors, you'll earn a commission.

These are two signals that should trigger warning bells. Con artists who approach you won't call the scheme a "pyramid sale" so it's up to you to recognize it.

Although this type of fraud comes in all shapes and sizes, here's an example. You're told you're being given a chance to invest in something that will make you a lot of money. You have to keep the investment for a certain amount of time, such as for six months. If you recruit other investors, you could earn even more money, for example in the form of a percentage.

There's no free lunch in life. The fraudster will use your own money to pay you commissions and will disappear with the money just before he's found out, yet more proof that if it's too good to be true, it probably is!

If you're offered this type of investment, contact the AMF's Information Centre.