Blog - March 16, 2020

Fraud Prevention Month

March is Fraud Prevention Month in Canada.

We wanted to take some time to provide an overview of some of the ways you can protect yourself from scams and fraudsters.

As with most crime, anyone can be targeted. Although there are specific scams that seem geared to impact a specific demographic, Canadians across every spectrum have been victimized and scammers get more sophisticated every year.

In 2019 the Competition Bureau of Canada says fraud cost Canadians 98 million dollars, with more than 19,000 victims.

In Canada we have an Anti Fraud Centre, a partnership between the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Competition Bureau of Canada. (Visit the anti fraud centre at

According to the Anti Fraud Centre, in 2019 the top three types of fraud (by dollars scammed from unsuspecting Canadians) were:

  1. SpearPhishing scams ($21.4 million) which involve a scammer pretending to be an individual or business the victim already has a relationship with. Scammers do this by spoofing a legitimate email address that would be trusted by the victim.
  2. Romance scams ($18.3 million) that are enacted by a scammer developing a long-distance/online romance with an individual, gaining their trust, and bilking them by eventually asking for money for an emergency or for travel.
  3. Investment scams ($10.7 million dollars) perpetrated by solicitations to invest in a false or deceptive investment opportunity.

In each of these cases, the targets of the scam can vary greatly so it’s best for everyone to be wary of things that seem too good to be true, or circumstances where an individual or business you know and trust seems to be behaving unusually.

You can visit the “Protect Yourself” section of the Anti Fraud website for tips and information on how to avoid falling victim to fraudsters:

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