CSA Releases 2022 “Investor Education Report” Highlighting Canadian Regulators’ Crypto Initiatives

Interest in Crypto assets continues to rise, although current asset prices may not show it. As such, various regulators in Canada have been working hard to educate the masses about cryptocurrencies and the companies that offer them. The latest example of this comes from the Canadian Securities Administration (CSA), and its 2022 report titled “Investor Education in Canada.”

Source: Twitter @OSC_News

Since provincial and territorial regulation is fairly fragmented, it did not attempt to share generality, opting instead to highlight what provincial regulators are doing.

Ontario Securities Commission (OSC)

Touting a “262% increase in cryptocurrency complaints in 2022 compared to 2021,” the OSC believes now is the time to create a dedicated resource to help Ontarians clear any confusion surrounding Crypto assets. The resource GetSmarterAboutCrypto.ca aims to educate investors about the following,

  • How Crypto Assets Work
  • The role of OSC in regulation
  • Where to check if a cryptocurrency exchange is registered

In addition to this, testimonials highlighting various fraudulent tactics are shared to raise awareness of this ongoing problem.

Nova Scotia Securities Commission (NSSC)

Meanwhile, in Nova Scotia, the NSSC has followed a similar path to the OSC, publishing its own list of registered cryptocurrency asset exchanges in an attempt to reduce fraud. Some of the key names on this list include companies like Bitbuy, Coinsquare, WealthSimple, and more.

In addition to providing this list, the NSSC has also begun producing short videos highlighting some of the key facts surrounding the predation of Nova Scotians by unregistered platforms.

Watch out for unregistered cryptocurrency exchanges

Alberta Securities Commission (ASC)

Alberta’s main regulator, the ASC, 5,000km west of Nova Scotia, has taken similar steps over the past year. In publishing its own “Investor’s Guide: Cryptocurrencies”, ASC not only answered “what are cryptoassets”, but also introduced readers to custody methods (hot vs cold wallets), registration platforms, and more.

All in all, the ASC offers the following tips for handling Crypto assets in a secure manner.

  • Check the registration of crypto asset trading platforms before investing
  • Avoid social media and online groups that promote experts who can help you invest in crypto assets
  • Ignore investment opportunities offered through social media and dating apps
  • Look for guaranteed high returns with little risk of loss
  • Be wary of crypto asset recovery offers
  • Deny remote access to your computer
  • Avoid unusual payment or transfer methods
  • Don’t invest in anything you can’t understand

Like its Ontario counterpart, the ASC has taken the time to clarify that securities laws apply to assets in many cases even if they are not securities. More specifically, “If the crypto-assets are not securities or derivatives, Alberta securities laws will still apply to platforms that provide Alberta customers with a venue for trading and custody of crypto-assets. If the platform does not hold crypto-assets for clients or facilitate the trading of crypto assets as securities or derivatives, securities laws may not apply.”

in other news

In addition to the aforementioned research reports, there have been various other recent developments involving Canadian regulators. Here are a few examples of them.

OSC chair resigns

Recently, OSC Chairman Heather Zordel announced her resignation. Citing “personal reasons and workload,” Zordel’s departure marked the shortest term in office for any chairman, taking only seven months — just a quarter of her two-year term.

OSC Crypto Asset Survey

To effectively educate the masses about crypto, regulators must first measure the existing sentiment, education, and awareness surrounding such assets. OSC has recognized this and recently shared the results of its latest “Crypto Asset Survey.” Here are a few key highlights from its findings, based on a poll of 2,360 Canadians.

While 13% of Canadians were found to already own crypto assets or crypto funds, 87% of them were already investors. These individuals were found to have an above-average level of financial literacy.

Among those individuals who have yet to set foot in and participate in the industry, the following reasons top the list.

  • ‘It feels like gambling’
  • network security issues
  • Volatility

It should be noted that while these may be of greatest concern to those who do not own Crypto assets, the same group is said to have “…more limited knowledge and understanding of cryptoassets.”

Interestingly, despite the increased interest in Crypto assets from institutional investors and investment firms over the past few years, financial advisors in Canada seem reluctant to recommend them. The survey shows that only 40% of those who already own Crypto assets have discussed it with their financial advisor. Of the 40% who discussed, 15% were explicitly advised not to buy.

With financial advisors hesitant to promote Crypto assets and the limited experience of Canadians owning Crypto assets, this survey makes it clear that mainstream adoption has yet to happen. While this may mean that we are still a few years away from the true adoption of Crypto assets, it is encouraging that the market is nowhere near its potential in terms of reach and financial opportunity.

Source of information: Compiled from SECURITIES by 0x Information.The copyright belongs to the author Joshua Stoner and may not be reproduced without permission

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