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Research an Investment Offer

Always take the time to check out an investment and the person selling it before you invest.

Before You Invest

Do a Background Check

First, use the National Registration Search (NRS) on the Canadian Securities Administrators’ (CSA) website to check if your advisor or firm is registered.

Next, check the CSA’s Disciplined List.

  • If the person or company you are dealing with is on the list, ask questions or call BCSC Contact Centre immediately.

For more information, visit our Advisor Check page to learn how to research an investment advisor. You can also search the BCSC’s current and historical criminal enforcement cases for information about persons currently being investigated as well as persons who pleaded guilty or were convicted since 2008.

Research the Investment

  • Review Investor Alerts and the Investment Caution List. These sources will let you know if securities regulators are warning people about the company or individual selling an investment.
  • Look at the National Cease Trade Order (CTO) Database. A CTO against a company prohibits residents in the province where it is active from trading in the securities of that company.
  • Look for news or information online about an individual or firm. You may find out about unhappy victims, court cases, or rumours that you should investigate further.

Get Help

  • Hire or consult with a registered, professional financial advisor.
  • Use BCSC InvestRight’s Investor Guide.
  • Do some independent learning – the more knowledge you have, the better questions you will ask.

Make Sure the Investment Fits

  • If it feels too risky or doesn’t fit into your financial plan, get some help before you invest.
  • If there is pressure to purchase an investment, hold on to your money. This is a fraud warning sign. You may find other fraud warning signs are present once you do your research.
  • Bring suspicious investment activity to the attention of the BCSC by reaching out to the BCSC Contact Centre. You can report suspicious activity anonymously through the BCSC’s online complaint form.
  • Remember to keep records in case you need to make a complaint or take legal action.

Crypto Quiz

Test Your Crypto Asset Knowledge.

This quiz is designed to introduce you to the basics of crypto assets. It is not intended to provide investment or financial advice, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for such advice.

Cryptocurrencies and blockchain are the same thing.