Awareness Can Keep a Victim from Getting Hooked
ORILLIA, ON, March 26, 2015 /CNW/ - Members of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Anti-Rackets Branch remind everyone to be aware of the many email scams criminals use to commit identity theft and other crimes.
Phishing is any e-mail falsely claiming to be from an established legitimate organization such as a financial institution, business or government agency. The e-mail may request or direct the consumer to visit a certain website to update or provide personal and/or financial information and passwords. It is really a malicious attempt to collect customer information for the purpose of committing fraud. This is also known as 'brand spoofing.'
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC; formerly Phonebusters) reports phishing fraud scams continue to take a critical financial toll on Canadians. In 2014, the CAFC received 2,412 'phishing' complaints. The 1,318 people who were identified as victims lost more than $245,600.
To recognize and avoid phishing:
- Protect your computer with anti-virus software, spyware filters, email filters and firewall programs.
- Contact the financial institution immediately and report your suspicions.
- Do not reply to any email that requests your personal information.
- Look for misspelled words.
- Always report phishing or 'spoofed' emails.
If you suspect you or someone you know has been a victim of fraud, contact your local police service or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or online at https://www.tipsubmit.com/ or the official entity that it appears to be from.
Join the Fraud Prevention Month 2015 conversation on your social media channels to prevent further harm and victimization by using the hashtags #stopfraud #fraudprevention and #dontbeavictim
"Together, we need to do all we can to convince the 95 per cent of victims to report fraud which could then prevent more harm and victimization. Always report phishing or 'spoofed' emails."
– Deputy Commissioner Scott TOD, OPP Investigations and Organized Crime Command.
"Don't rush to update something you received via email. Take a minute and think, 'Does it make sense that they would be emailing me for my particulars?' If not, report the crime."
– Detective Inspector Mike BICKERTON, OPP Anti-Rackets Branch.
MEDIA NOTE: This is the last in a weekly series of topical OPP media releases as part of its 2015 Fraud Prevention Month campaign.
SOURCE Ontario Provincial Police
For further information: Detective Constable Ted Schendera, OPP Anti-Rackets Branch, Phone: 705-329-6437