Online BankingExpand/Collapse

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CUSmarter about Fraud Prevention

March is Fraud Prevention Month!

We've put together a library of the information and resources you need to fight fraud and keep yourself, your family and your money safe.


Fraud Statistics Expand/Collapse

In 2020, the CAFC received 101,483 fraud reports involving nearly $160 million in reported losses. Moreover, 67,294 of the reports were from Canadian consumers and businesses, that reported losses totalling more than $104.2 million.

Top 10 frauds affecting Canadians based on number of reports in 2020:

Fraud Type Reports Victims Dollar Loss
Extortion 17,390 6,689 $12.5 M
Identity Fraud 16,970 16,970 N/A
Personal Info 6,649 4,386 N/A
Phishing 3,672 1,167 N/A
Merchandise 3,354 2,728 $8.7 M
Vendor Fraud 2,320 1,478 $4.2 M
Job 2,297 1,035 $2.5 M
Service 2,009 1,241 $8.5 M
Spear Phishing 1,049 525 $14.4 M
Emergency 924 310 $1.0 M

Top 10 frauds affecting Canadians based on dollar loss in 2020:

Fraud Type Reports Victims Dollar Loss
Romance 899 620 $18.5 M
Investments 501 428 $16.5 M
Spear Phishing 1,049 525 $14.4 M
Extortion 17,390 6,689 $12.5 M
Merchandise 3,354 2,728 $8.7 M
Service 2,009 1,241 $8.5 M
Vendor Fraud 2,320 1,478 $4.2 M
Prize 754 240 $3.5 M
Bank Investigator 835 340 $3.0 M
Job 2,297 1,035 $2.6 M

It is estimated that fewer than 5% of victims file a fraud report with the CAFC.

Fraud: Recognize, Reject, Report. Expand/Collapse

Many frauds today are designed to play on a potential victim’s emotions and get them to respond without thinking. They attempt to illicit responses based on panic, fear, desperation, elation, love which are often escalated by presenting urgent situations requiring immediate action. The slogan for fraud prevention is geared toward getting citizens in Canada to slow down and not react to potential fraud solicitations. We encourage people to recognize that fraudsters are using every means at their disposal to target them; telephone, email, text messaging, social media, internet and mail. We ask that they change how they react to the unsolicited offers or demands.

Rejecting fraud involves protecting your personal information and money. Routine practices to develop include checking credit profiles, monitoring accounts for unauthorized activities, updating operating systems and antivirus software, and not doing business over the phone. We want people to slow down, to think about and assess the situation before reacting. This can involve saying no, doing due diligence, researching and confirming information, and talking to family members and friends. We want to encourage people to take their time, and to scrutinize all offers and demands.

Reporting fraud means speaking up, even when no money was lost. Like other crimes, if fraud is not reported, we don’t know what is happening and can’t warn other people. The information from one fraud occurrence (a bank account, email address, virtual currency address, telephone number, etc) can be investigated and is useful in linking other occurrences. Moreover, reporting provides other opportunities for disruption. By reporting the information to the banks, money service businesses, email providers, telephone companies, dating websites, social media networks; steps can be taking to block or remove these fraudulent accounts and their content.

Fraud Prevention Checklist Expand/Collapse

A few questions to ask yourself every time you are contacted for personal information. If any of the following apply, do not provide your information and seek advice.
  • Is the call unsolicited? Was it expected or out of the blue?
  • Are they asking you to confirm personal information such as your name, address, or account details?
  • Are they looking for a fast or instant response?
  • Are they asking you for money?
  • Is the caller avoiding using the actual name or the company or financial institution?
  • Are they offering you a prize, free gift, or trial?
  • Are they claiming to be the police or investigating something?
  • Does the email have an odd email address?
  • Is the formatting strange or are there spelling mistakes?
  • Are you being asked to change your password despite not sending a request to do so?

Reporting Fraud Expand/Collapse

Fraud is evolving. A fraud can often carry on over an extended period of time and is a crime that is difficult to recognize and report. To make reporting easier the CAFC suggests completing the following six steps:
  • Step 1: Gather all information pertaining to the fraud.
  • Step 2: Write out a chronological statement of events.
  • Step 3: Report the incident to your local law enforcement.
  • Step 4: Report the incident to the CAFC through the Fraud Reporting System (FRS) or toll free at 1-888-495-8501.
  • Step 5: Report the incident to the Financial Institution or Payment Provider used to send the money.
  • Step 6: If the fraud took place online, report the incident directly to the appropriate website.
Back to CUSmarter
Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre Bulletin

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre Bulletin


Canadians are increasingly relying on the Internet and social media to stay connected. This presents opportunities for fraudsters who are actively creating fake accounts, profiles and advertisements.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Protect Your Information

Protect Your Information


Working from home, online banking, and socializing online have all increased over the pandemic period creating new opportunities for fraudsters to capture your personal and financial information. Learn how to protect your information.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
The Little Book of Scams
Scammers are sneaky and sly. They can target anyone, from youngsters to retirees. When it comes to protecting yourself, the answer is simple: knowledge is power! Read on to arm yourself with the information you need to fight fraud and keep yourself, your family and your money safe.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Be Fraud Smart.
Watch these videos to arm yourself with the information you need to fight fraud and keep yourself, your family and your money safe.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Fraud in 3D
Anyone can be the victim of a scam, regardless of age, education or place of residence. Most incidents of fraud can be avoided. To protect yourself effectively, stay vigilant and learn to recognize fraud.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Travelling? Let us know!

Travelling? Let us know!

If you're planning on travelling, let us know so we can make sure your card doesn't get blocked.


FRAUD FACTS 2017
Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre collects information on fraud and identity theft. We provide information on past and current scams affecting Canadians. If you think you're a victim of fraud, report it!

FRAUD FACTS 2017

Get Cyber Safe

Get Cyber Safe is a national public awareness campaign created to inform Canadians about cyber security and the simple steps they can take to protect themselves online.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Get Cyber Safe!
Be Fraud Smart

It can happen to anyone. Criminals are becoming more sophisticated,
using the latest trends and technologies to defraud Canadians.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Little Book of Scams
The Canadian Edition of THE LITTLE BLACK BOOK OFSCAMS: YOUR GUIDE TO PROTECTION AGAINST FRAUD.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Report a Scam

Report a Scam

Who to contact depends on where you live and what type of scam is involved.

FRAUD FACTS 2017
Alerts

Alerts: Stay Informed; Stay Safe.

Not only do Alerts help you keep track of your accounts, but they add another layer of security to your online banking experience by alerting you of account activity by text message, email or both!

Alerts