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Protect yourself from fraudMarch 2, 2016 Technology
March is Fraud Prevention Month in Canada. Protect your hard-earned assets and your good name. Arm yourself with the ability to recognize and fight fraud.
The unauthorized acquisition of your personal information.
WAYS TO STEAL IDENTITY
- Your paper trail – from your trash or mailbox
- Malicious software
- Legitimiate-looking emails that trick you into providing personal or banking details
Victims spend an average of 600 hours recovering from identity theft and an average of $2,000 on out-of-pocket expenses.
WAYS TO PROTECT YOURSELF
- Shred old financial/personal documents.
- Review financial statements regularly for odd charges.
- Do not open attachments from unfamiliar emails.
- Never reply to spam email, even to unsubscribe.
- Remember that legitimate financial institutions will never ask for your account details in an email.
- Avoid responding to texts or missed calls from unfamiliar numbers, especially 1-900 numbers.
- Only give out personal information when absolutely necessary and to people you trust.
MASS MARKETING FRAUD
Fraud committed via mass communication media.
WAYS TO SCAM
- Asking for help to transfer a large amount of money overseas and offering to share a portion of the money
- Promises of a large financial return for a small cost
- Get-rich-quick schemes
- Messages saying you won the lottery or
got a huge inheritance from a long-lost
In 2014 Canadians 60-69 years old were targeted the most, but the 50-59 age group had the highest total dollar loss.
WAYS TO PROTECT YOURSELF
- Be wary of exclusive investment opportunities initiated by family/friends/acquaintances.
- Be wary of offers that create a sense of urgency (“Once in a lifetime!”).
- Be wary of outrageous performance claims.
- Do not purchase a product without first checking out the product and company.
- Never send money to anyone you don’t know and trust.
If you are a victim of identity theft or fraud, report it!
- File a police report.
- Contact the appropriate institutions, such as your credit card company, bank, or government departments that
- Contact the two national credit bureaus, Equifax and TransUnion Canada, to place a fraud alert.
- Report the fraud to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
Be sure to take notes as events take place; keep a record of your time and expenses; and keep any evidence related to
the complaint, such as email copies, receipts, or cancelled cheques.
Statistics, factual data, and other information are from sources believed to be reliable, but accuracy cannot be guaranteed. It is furnished on the basis and
understanding that Raymond James Ltd. is to be under no liability whatsoever in respect thereof. Raymond James Ltd., Member – Canadian Investor
Help protect your loved ones by sharing this information with them. For more fraud prevention resources, click here.
(This link goes to the Government of Canada’s Competition Bureau that has information on Fraud Prevention.)