The top scams in Canada that you need to watch out for

Fraudsters have endless scam tactics - from money transfer fraud to trust fund diversions. Name it and they got it. 


In 2019, the CAFC received more than 20,000 reports involving more than $43M in losses. This is the very reason why Canadians must continue to be vigilant when receiving communication, may it be via calls, emails or text messages from unknown senders. 


Here are the top 5 recent scams: 


  • Sin Scam

  • The victim gets a call from someone pretending to be from Service Canada or another government agency, saying their social insurance number (SIN) has issues - either compromised, blocked or suspended. As technology improves, scam improves as well at the same time. 


    They were found to be using caller ID spoofing where the fraudsters disguise the number seen on the ID display in order to trick victims into answering the phone and trusting the caller. 


    The caller will typically ask for SIN and other personal information such as date of birth, address and more. 


  • Bank Investor Scam

  • The victim receives a call from a fraudster posing as a store employee inquiring about a recent purchase on their credit card and is often asked to immediately call the number in the back of their card to verify the validity of the first call. When the victim believes they hung up, the original caller who really didn’t disconnect the call, redirects the victim to the impostors. 


  • Scams Targeting Lawyers and Trust Funds

  • Social  engineering scams target lawyers and their clients and usually involve trust funds. The fraudster pretends to be an existing client or someone genuinely authorised to give instructions on the client’s behalf. 


  • Can You Hear Me Scam

  • The fraudster poses as service providers such as mortgage lenders or utility companies and asks “can you hear me?, right after the call is answered. The fraudster then records the victim’s “yes” and hangs up. That’s the only thing they need - a voice signature that can be used to authorize fraudulent charges to credit cards and other personal accounts via telephone where voice authentication is required. 


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