To keep scammers out, TD fraud expert says awareness is key as Canadians say they’re most often targeted by phone, email and text message
More than half of all Canadians (51%) surveyed say they do not discuss fraud prevention and protection with people they know
TORONTO, March 7, 2022 /CNW/ – A new survey released by TD Bank Group for this year’s Fraud Prevention Month reveals that four in ten Canadians surveyed (37%) have been targeted by fraudsters in the past year, the most fraud attempts taking place over the phone (64%), followed by email and text (58%).
One in four Canadians surveyed (26%) say they have received investment advice online from people they do not know personally, including through social media and/or direct messaging platforms. TD Fraud Expert, Sophie LeungHead of Protect Platform, which oversees fraud strategy and cyber threat management, advises users to thoroughly research sources of information before making an investment decision that may result in significant financial loss due to fraud .
“Investment scams can have a huge impact on victims when they are misled into donating large sums of money, sometimes almost all of their savings, towards bogus investment opportunities,” Leung explains. “Canadians should continue to exercise caution when receiving investment advice from people they don’t know, especially as reliance on technology and communication devices continues.”
According to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, Canadians lost a combined total of $163.9 million to investment scams in 2021, making it the costliest reported scam in the country during this period.I
Raising awareness through conversation
The TD survey found that 52% of Canadians feel vulnerable to fraud, with eight in ten (82%) believing that increased online activity increases risk. However, 51% of Canadians say discussions about fraud risk and fraud prevention are not brought up in conversations with people they know, including friends and family.
“Fraudsters will continue to adapt and evolve their tactics, so it’s important to continue educating and learning the best ways to protect against fraud and help avoid financial loss,” Leung says. “By regularly sharing and discussing more openly our experiences of receiving scam calls or messages, we can help people be more aware of the scams out there, especially when the conversations are with people in whom we have trust.”
For Canadians looking to better protect themselves and their loved ones against financial fraud, TD recommends the following tips and advice:
- Check if a request is legitimate – If you receive a phone call claiming to be from a government agency/financial institution requesting confidential information, your participation in a survey, or explicitly asking you to lie to friends, family or others, it could be of a fraud. If in doubt, hang up and dial the number on the back of your debit/credit card or visit the organization’s website to find genuine contact details.
- practice skepticism – Approach unsolicited advice with suspicion and take your time researching sources, including checking business and professional license registration, before making a financial decision, especially if you feel compelled to do so quickly. Be careful not to open links from email addresses and phone numbers you don’t recognize.
- Have conversations with family and friends – If you receive fraudulent phone calls or messages, speak up. Help protect others by sharing your fraud experiences to educate and raise awareness. Also be sure to read and share TD Fraud Resources and Tips to help you and your family stay safe and informed.
- Be careful of your fraud alerts – Using free services like TD Fraud Alertsyou will receive text messages to inform you of suspicious activity on your personal bank accounts.
- Lock or block your credit card if necessary – Manage your card using the TD app to lock a misplaced credit card or block in-person international purchases when you’re not traveling outside of Canada.
- Protect your PIN and passwords – The only person who should know your passwords and PIN is you, not even your family members. Your bank will never ask you for this information. Never disclose personal confidential information or account/login credentials to any third party, whether in person, over the phone, or online.
- Regularly check your statements, online accounts and banking apps – Taking these steps will help alert you to fraudulent transactions more quickly. Money management applications, such as the My TD MySpend app, can be useful tools and provide real-time expense transaction notifications, making it easier and faster for you to recognize fraudulent transactions.
About the TD Fraud Survey
TD Bank Group commissioned Ipsos to conduct a national online survey of 1,001 Canadians aged 18 and over. Responses were collected between February 4 and 7, 2022. The poll is accurate to within ±3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
About TD Bank Group
The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Group (“TD” or the “Bank”). TD is the fifth largest bank in North America by assets and serves more than 26 million customers across three key businesses operating in a number of locations in financial centers around the world: Canadian Retail, including TD Canada Trust, TD Auto Finance Canada, TD Wealth (Canada), TD Direct Investing and TD Insurance; US Retail, including TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, TD Auto Finance US, TD Wealth (US) and an investment in The Charles Schwab Corporation; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD also ranks among the world’s leading online financial services companies, with more than 15 million active online and mobile customers. TD had 1.8 trillion Canadian dollars in assets on January 31, 2022. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol “TD” on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges
SOURCE TD Bank Group
For further information: For more information or to arrange an interview: Ryan-Sang Lee, Corporate and Public Affairs, TD Bank Group, [email protected]