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BC Securities Commission begins Be Fraud Aware campaign

The British Columbia Securities Commission has resumed its "Be Fraud Aware" campaign, now in the second of a planned three-year run. The television campaign is intended to educate residents of the province about the risk of investment fraud. The campaign includes two television commercials and three YouTube videos, as well as a mobile application that alerts users to warning signs of investment fraud. The two TV commercials feature a character named David Johnson who defrauds people through his persuasive abilities. The first ad depicts victims being introduced to the fraudster through relationships of trust within their communities. The second ad uses a split screen to contrast the character's sales pitch with his underlying motives. The online videos provide details about how such frauds operate. The campaign includes materials in English, Punjabi, Mandarin and Cantonese. "We want British Columbians to fraud-proof themselves by recognizing and avoiding investment fraud," said commission chair Brenda Leong. "We also want people to report investment fraud when they encounter or suspect it. We want people to see just how charismatic and charming these people can be when they are pitching an investment. We modelled him on descriptions of high profile convicted fraudsters like Ian Thow, Bernie Madoff and Earl Jones."

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