Fraud awareness

There are many known scams, pitches and fraud types, with new ones invented daily. It is important that you educate and protect yourself by staying up-to-date with the latest trends. For more information, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC).

Remember: if it sounds too good to be true, it is!  Find our top fraud awareness tips below!

1. Protect your personal information. Be careful what you share on social media, as cyber criminals may be able to steal your identity if they find personal details online. Check your privacy settings on social platforms to ensure you are comfortable with what information is being shared with people you do not know.

TIP: protect yourself from identify theft by regularly checking your credit report and financial statements and report any irregularities right away to your credit union and the credit bureau.

2. Passwords. To keep your information secure, always use passwords that are difficult to guess and never reuse passwords for multiple sites or platforms. If required, use a password manager and where possible use two-factor authentication so your identity is validated with an email or text message when logging in.

TIP: a robust password should include special characters, numbers and a mixture of upper and lowercase letters. 

3. Phishing/Smishing: Phishing involves sending an email (Smishing is by text) that appears legitimate, but links to "spoofed" websites. Hackers use these links to download malware on your device or ask you to enter your personal information or financial details. If you recieve an email with an urgent or threatening request, look up the company phone number (don’t use a number from the email) and call to verify the validity of the email.


TIP: never click on links (in an email, text or on social media) from an unknown sender or that you are not expecting.

See more email phishing red flags in the infographic here.

What can I do if I think I am a victim of Phishing?
If you’ve been tricked by a spoofed email or website and shared personal financial data such as credit card numbers, account numbers, user names or passwords then you could be a victim or identity theft or other forms of fraud.

What to do:

  • Report your suspicions to your credit union.
  • Keep the original email (if possible). 
  • Have your computer cleaned and retain a copy of the report.
  • Once the computer is clean, add or change the password on your computer.
  • Add or change the password on your email account, using two factor authentication if possible.
  • Review and clean up the contact information in your address book.
  • Report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre or by calling 1-888-495-8501.

  • Review your credit report via Equifax Canada: 1-800-465-7166 or TransUnion: 1-800-663-9980

  • Document all of the steps you take and any expenses you incur in case you need to clear your name or re-establish your credit following identity theft.

For a full listing of frauds and scams, and how you can protect yourself, visit CAFC.