March was Fraud Prevention Month in Ontario. The month has come to an end and Crime Stoppers is hoping that citizens have become more alert and attune to the signs of fraud.
Every year, thousands of Canadians fall victim to various forms of fraud. In Ontario alone, residents lost over $142 million dollars in 2021 due to fraud. Once again, Sarnia Lambton Crime Stoppers is reminding the community to be aware and alert and to recognize and report fraud to your local police agency and to contact the Fraud Prevention Bureau.
Do your homework! Pay attention to the tips and tools offered by your bank and by your local law enforcement agency. Never be afraid to hang up on the annoying phone calls. Ignore those very persistent e mails. Shred any documents containing important information regarding your identity. Protect your passwords and pin numbers at all times.
Fraudsters prey on the elderly. They prey on victim’s emotions. They take advantage of a person’s vulnerable situation. There are many “scams” circulating: the infamous “grandparent” scam, the “romance” scam, the “bank inspector” scam. Those are just a few. It seems a new one or type every day.
On-line fraud has increased greatly since the start of the pandemic as many individuals have had to turn to “on line” services for numerous reasons. There are many resources around to assist people who have fallen victim to these unfortunate and sometimes complex scams.
If you know of someone that is involved in fraud or any type of scamming, gather as much information as possible, keep notes, documentation, receipts, etc., and report the incident to law enforcement agencies that are applicable in your area or jurisdiction. Report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-800-495-8501.
You can also contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or go on-line at www.p3tips.com if you suspect someone as the fraudster. Get yourself rewarded and remain anonymous.