Online Purchase Scams
Wire Fraud – Spearphishing
Online Dating Scams
Income Tax Scam
Miracle Weight Loss Scams
Advance Fee Loans
Shady Contractor Services
1. Online Purchase Scams
More than $13 million lost
The most reported type of scam to BBB Scam Tracker. There isn’t just one. From fake websites to counterfeit goods to free trial traps and more, online purchase scams are everywhere.
Shop on reputable websites
Read all terms and conditions
Be wary of offers that are “too good to be true”
2. Wire Fraud / Spearphishing
More than $20 million lost
Canadian businesses lose millions every year to those posing as CEOs who redirect company money through wire and email transfers.
Build in payment redundancy systems
Make sure email addresses are correct
Educate your employees about these scams
3. Romance Scam
More than $19 million lost
Canadians lost a lot more than their hearts to catphishers in 2017. Online dating scams continue unabated to hurt those looking for love.
Never send money to someone you’ve never met
Always meet in person
Don’t give out personal information such as email and phone number
4. Employment Scam
More than $5 million lost
Last year’s number one scam slides down the list, but still targets Canadians through reputable employment websites.
If you didn’t apply, you didn’t get hired
A legitimate company would not ask you to wire money as a “test”
Look for poor grammar, lack of job details, and over-the-top pay scale
5. Cryptocurrency Scams
More than $1.7 million lost
Cryptocurrencies are speculative, high-risk investments that are mostly unregulated. As they have captured the attention of investors, so too have fraudsters taken notice.
There is an elevated risk of fraud and manipulation
Some offerings may not comply with securities laws
6. Income Tax Scam
More than $5 million lost
For years Canadians from coast to coast have been targeted in the CRA tax scam. While we are getting better at recognizing it, the threatening phone calls keep coming.
The CRA does not make threatening phone calls
The CRA will not solicit personal information over the phone or by email
Canadian government agencies do not accept payment in Bitcoin
7. Miracle Weight-loss Scam
Losing weight is a goal for many Canadians. Be careful, many fat-burning products may only lighten your wallet.
If it looks too good to be true, it probably is
Don’t trust unsubstantiated claims
There is no magic pill for rapid weight loss
8. Advance Fee Loans
More than $1.5 million lost
The shady lender guarantees you’ll get a loan. They turn around and ask for an upfront payment as security.
If you’re approved for a loan and they request money as security, walk away
Research reputable lenders
A guarantee of a loan before any credit check is highly suspect
9. Shady Contractors
More than $3 million lost
Yes, this is still a problem. Contractors without a conscience who take your deposit and disappear.
Be wary of unsolicited offers of work
Get several estimates for a job
Go to BBB.org to research trustworthy companies
10. Fake Invoices
Millions of Canadians have online accounts to companies like Amazon, UPS, Canada Post, and iTunes. Your email inbox is often stuffed with realistic looking invoices from many different organizations.
Contact the organization directly if you have concerns
Compare details of the invoice to your original order
Don’t click on any links or input personal information