Get Fraud Smart with This Dos and Don'ts Checklist

Written by Kelley Keehn

Friday, March 12th, 2021

An unfortunate constant in our lives today is organized fraudsters trying everything they can to find new ways to trick us out of our hard-earned dollars.

Here are the latest fallout numbers from the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre:

The impact of COVID-19 fraud

Between March 6, 2020 and January 31, 2021

  • Canadian reports of COVID-19 fraud: 11,502
  • Canadian victims of COVID-19 fraud: 9,797
  • Lost to COVID-19 fraud: $7 million

The impact of fraud so far this year

As of January 31, 2021

  • Canadian reports of fraud: 4,833 (68,452 in all of 2020)
  • Canadian victims of fraud: 3,313 (40,612 in all of 2020)
  • Lost to fraud: $10.1 million ($106.4 million in all of 2020)

Now is a great time to refresh some dos and don'ts to protect you and your family against the scammers, with tips from the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

When it Comes to Being Fraud Aware

Do:

  •  Ask questions

  •  Request information in writing

  •  Google suspicious phone numbers or organizations

  •  Watch out for urgent pleas that play on your emotions

  •  Hang up if you're feeling uncomfortable

  •  Talk to friends and family

Don't:

  •  Be afraid to say no

  •  React impulsively

  •  Feel intimidated by high pressure sales tactics

  •  Assume your call display is correct

  •  Give out personal information

  •  Respond to questions about confirming or updating your personal or financial information

Cyber Security Dos and Don'ts

Do:

  •  Protect your computer by ensuring your operating system and security software are up-to-date

  •  Protect your online accounts, use strong passwords and enable two-factor authentication when possible

  •  Secure your devices and internet connections with passwords, biometrics, locking your phone

  •  Only visit websites you trust

  •  Disable your webcam or storage devices when not in use

  •  If you're having problems with your computer or device, bring it to a trusted local technician

Don't:

  •  Click pop-ups or links in emails with spelling and formatting errors from unknown sources

  •  Download suspicious attachments

  •  Give anyone remote access to your computer

  •  Use public Wi-Fi

  •  Leave your phone unattended

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