OTTAWA, ON, Feb. 27, 2023 /CNW/ - In the past decade, technology has completely transformed the criminal landscape, making fraud easier to commit, more widespread, and more sophisticated than ever before.
In 2022, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) received fraud and cybercrime reports totalling a staggering $530 million in victim losses. Nearly a 40 per cent increase from the unprecedented $380 million in losses in 2021. Unfortunately, the increase in financial loss isn't tied to an increase in reporting?the CAFC estimates that only 5 to 10 per cent of people report fraud.
The CAFC, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the Competition Bureau are once again joining forces this March to lead the 19th edition of Fraud Prevention Month. Under the theme "Tricks of the trade: What's in a fraudster's toolbox?", this year's campaign will expose fraudsters' tricks, tools and tactics, to help Canadians equip their own toolbox to protect themselves.
While law enforcement agencies and members of the Fraud Prevention Forum are committed to strategically collaborating and dedicating resources to preventing and combatting fraud, Canadian consumers and businesses also have a huge role to play to help stop fraudsters. Education and awareness are the strongest line of defence against scams and fraud.
This March, join the conversation using #FPM2023 to find and share information to recognize, reject and report fraud. Follow us on social media and spread the word far and wide:
If you or someone you know is a victim of a fraud, contact your local police service to report the crime and also report it to the CAFC online or toll-free at 1-888-495-8501. If a financial loss did not occur, still report it to the CAFC. If you have information about deceptive marketing practices, report it to the Competition Bureau. Your reports are essential to identify linkages, catch criminals, and prevent further victimization.
"As we see the amount of money lost to fraud continue to increase, our duty to protect each other grows more and more important. Fraudsters are using increasingly sophisticated methods to victimize Canadians while also relying on the basic tricks too. During this Fraud Prevention Month, I encourage everyone to take time to learn the signs of a scam or fraud, know how to report it and share this information with the people around you. It could take just one conversation with a loved one to prevent them from falling victim to fraud. By working together, we can prevent these crimes from happening."
- RCMP's Director General of the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre and National Cybercrime Coordination Centre, Chris Lynam
"Fraudsters have developed new sophisticated tricks and tools to take advantage of Canadians in the digital economy. This Fraud Prevention Month, the Competition Bureau will help Canadians recognize, reject and report online deceptive marketing practices used by scammers to entrap victims and perpetrate fraud. ''
- Matthew Boswell, Commissioner of Competition
SOURCE Royal Canadian Mounted Police
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