Once the plaything of libertarian lovers and anarchistic eccentrics, cryptocurrency has very much ‘gone mainstream’. On Friday, a Canadian regulator, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), announced that it had launched a cryptocurrency education initiative.
The regulator says that the move to provide more information to the public regarding cryptocurrencies stems from their growing popularity among Canadian retail investors.
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Research by the OSC, which was published in June of this year, found that around 5 percent of Ontario residents held cryptocurrency – equivalent to 500,000 people.
The same study showed that most cryptocurrency investors in Ontario are men between 18-34 years old and that more than half of them were spending over CAD 1,000 ($766).
Now those investors – and anyone else interested in buying cryptocurrency – will have a reference point for educational materials. The OSC has launched one site that could be fairly described as a cryptocurrency guide.
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“These initiatives help investors better understand cryptoasset products and services,” said Tyler Fleming, Director of the Investor Office at the OSC, “as well as be on the alert for any potential red flags before making a purchase.”
Along with background material, the site provides users with information on how and where they can purchase cryptocurrencies. It also explains what blockchain technology is, how initial coin offerings (ICOs) work and the role of miners in the cryptocurrency creation process.
Outside of this, the regulator has put up a fake ICO website. The purpose of this is to show investors what a fake ICO looks like and, hopefully, prevent them from falling into the clutches of scam artists.
Having spent a fair amount of time traversing the dark side of the web and looking at scam artists, I must say that the regulator has done an excellent job creating a faux-fraud cryptocurrency website. If they choose to pursuit it, the people at the OSC would have a bright future in the world of boiler rooms and binary options.