The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) is hoping a new board game will help educate Albertans on recognizing the red flags of fraud so they can protect themselves before making a real life investment.
Kajillionaire was launched March 6 and brings its players into the world of investment fraud to bring attention to the many different types of scams that Albertans commonly face.
The game is being promoted on the ASC’s investor education website and is a part of an annual campaign for Fraud Prevention Month.
“Each year, the ASC leads a campaign during Fraud Prevention Month to educate Albertans about how to protect themselves from investment scams,” said Alison Trollope, Director, Communications and Investor Education with the ASC.
“While our financial literacy efforts are year-round, we always heighten our focus in March to drive home the risks surrounding investment fraud and easy ways to protect yourself in a unique and memorable way,” she adds.
“Kajillionaire, the board game at the center of this year’s campaign, uses the resurgent interest in board games to educate Albertans on how to recognize potentially fraudulent investments and make wise investment decisions.”
In the game, players risk it all by putting their life savings on the line as they roll their way through a series of low-risk investment opportunities to become a wildly rich. The investments presented throughout the game tap into the psychological factors behind decision making demonstrating to players why scams are so enticing and why people fall victim to them.
Each player begins the game with $184,000 in ‘life savings’. During the game players will experience and learn how to recognize potential scams such as affinity fraud, Ponzi schemes, pump and dump scams, fake celebrity endorsement scams and more. The person who finishes the game with the most money left wins the game.
Kajillionaire was developed to highlight the potential devastation that fraud can have on its victims.
The total financial impact of securities fraud on Albertans is not fully known. According to the 2018 Alberta Investors Study conducted by the ASC, only 1 in 3 of Albertans who suspected fraud reported it to authorities. Of those Albertans who think they may have fallen for fraud, 1 in 4 report losing between $5,000 and $25,000.
Through Kajillionaire, it is the hope that people will become educated on the importance of checking first before investing.
Albertans who want more information on Kajillionaire are encouraged to visit CheckFirst.ca to learn more, and to access a wide range of resources to help increase wise investment decisions.
(With file from ASC media release)
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