Frauds and Scams

by Scott Ronalds

We all know someone who’s been scammed. They may have provided a piece of financial information to a convincing impostor, or clicked a seemingly harmless link and had their computer and personal information hacked.

Financial frauds and scams are prevalent and increasingly sophisticated these days. Indeed, some of the latest ploys use phony QR codes and AI-generated fake voices in an attempt to swindle you. The consequences of taking the bait can be severe. Consider the numbers from the federal government:

  • Canadians lost over $530 million to fraud last year. That’s almost $1.5 million a day.
  • There were over 92,000 reports of fraud last year and 57,000 victims.
  • 1 in 6 people reported being a victim of fraud in the previous five years.

And keep in mind, these are only the reported numbers. Many incidents go untracked due to victims being embarrassed or not knowing where to turn for help. In fact, Statistics Canada’s latest General Social Survey (which measures Canadians' experiences with certain crimes, whether or not they were reported to the police) indicated that only 1 in 10 victims reported fraud to the police, and only 7% reported it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

Thankfully, there are tips you can follow and measures to take to recognize scams and protect yourself and your family. In our November 23 Steadyhand Café (webinar series), we welcome Graham Webb, Executive Director of the Advocacy Centre for the Elderly (ACE), and Rob Paddick, Deputy Ombudsman of the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments (OBSI), for a discussion on this important topic.

Register for the webinar today! (A video of the session will be made available to all registrees following the event and will be posted on our YouTube channel.)

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