March is Fraud Prevention Month, and with reported cases of fraud on the rise, all British Columbians are encouraged to increase their awareness of current scams and learn how they can protect themselves and their loved ones.
Every year, people of all ages fall victim to fraud. In fact, 57,055 Canadians reported being targeted by scammers in the past year. However, fraudsters are increasingly targeting seniors.
Over the past two years, scammers have begun using more sophisticated methods for targeting their victims and cybercrime is on the rise. Cybercrime, also known as computer crime, uses the internet and technological devices to commit crimes. According to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, Canadians lost over $530M to fraud and cybercrime in 2022.
Learn About Different Types of Scams
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre is raising awareness of the top scams of 2023 with a new resource called Tricks of the trade: What’s in a fraudster’s toolbox? What’s in yours?. Scams that most frequently target seniors include the grandparent scam, romance scam, investment scam and service scams.
Seniors Safety and Security
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police have created the Seniors Guidebook to Safety and Security to answer common questions about seniors’ safety issues, including elder abuse, fraud and scams.
Information Security Awareness and Cyber Crime
An essential part of using technology is learning how to protect your private information, devices and passwords online. The B.C. government has published an online resource on Information Security Awareness.
Understanding Elder Financial Abuse
Financial abuse is the most common form of elder abuse in Canada. Learn how to recognize, reject and report elder financial abuse. This video features Pamela McDonald, Director of Communications and Education at the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC), and Isobel Mackenzie, B.C. Seniors Advocate.
Anyone who suspects they have been the victim or is aware of cybercrime or fraud should report it to their local police and to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre’s online reporting system or by phone at 1-888-495-8501.