Protecting finances and identity has become a bigger issue for millions of Canadians.
With the impact of fraud and identity theft highlighted by a rising number of scams and cyber breaches, a new survey shows that Canadians are taking steps to ensure that they don’t become victims.
The consequences of illegal activity run deeper than simply the loss of money; identity theft for example can have a serious impact when applying for credit including mortgages.
Changes to credit scores are among the first signs that consumers may have been affected.
March is Fraud Prevention Month and the survey published by Capital One Canada shows that 93% of Canadians are taking measures to mitigate fraud and identity theft – a substantial increase from the 53% who reported taking action in 2018.
It reveals that nearly 4 in 10 Canadians have either been a victim of or know someone who has been affected by fraud or identity theft.
"Digital interactions and engagement have become second nature today, allowing us to conduct transactions in an instant, but the risks of fraud and identity theft can be a real source of concern for many Canadians," says Mark Snyder, VP, Decision Sciences, Capital One Canada.
Helping to protect customers
While consumers have a responsibility to protect themselves from the risks of fraud and identity theft, mortgage professionals and firms play a vital role too.
“Opting in to two-way communications with your financial institution is a critical step people can take to help protect themselves, but still quickly and easily conduct online and mobile transactions. For example, we offer two-way fraud alerts for customers who opt-in that allow us to text or email in real-time when we detect unusual activity, prompting a simple 'yes' or 'no' response to verify purchases," added Snyder.