We would like to remind everyone, community members and business owners that no one is immune to Fraud. Scammers are sneaky and sly. They can target anyone, from youth to seniors. They can also target businesses.

Commonly, scammers contact individuals claiming that they are entitled to an extra refund or have to pay an outstanding balance immediately. The scammers are getting creative with their stories in an attempt to have individuals share personal information or worse, provide payment via prepaid credit cards or gift cards including iTunes, Google Play, Home Depot, etc.

Most, if not all reputable businesses that you deal with will already have your personal information and will not ask for these types of payments.

Protecting Yourself

Reputable businesses should never:

  • Use aggressive or threatening language.
  • Threaten you with an arrest or police.
  • Ask for payments via prepaid credit cards or gift cards, such as iTunes, Home Depot, Google Play, etc.
  • Collect or distribute payments through Interac e-transfer.
  • Use text messages to prompt payment or refund.

Business Owners – Protecting Our Community Members

  • If a customer is purchasing a large quantity of or high value in prepaid credit cards or gift cards, ask them why they’re purchasing them. This may include iTunes, Google Play, Home Depot, etc.
  • Be on the lookout for out for unusual purchasing patterns and work with your customers to help protect them. It is okay to redirect your customers to their financial institutions for further direction.

Crime Prevention starts with you and it is everyone’s responsibility. Knowledge is power!

The following are some great reference tools to educate yourself on the various scam types and how to protect yourself from falling victim to a fraud.

2019 Crime Prevention Campaign http://www.oacp.on.ca/news-events/campaigns/crime-prevention-campaigns

The Little Black Book of Scams https://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/eic/site/cb-bc.nsf/eng/04333.html

Canadian Anti- Fraud Centre (CAFC) http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm