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  • Caylie Gnyra

Alberta RCMP Share Fraud Prevention Resources

Each week throughout March, the Alberta RCMP has been highlighting various aspects of fraud in support of the Alberta Community Crime Prevention Association’s (ACCPA) Fraud Prevention Month campaign (https://albertacrimeprevention.com/fraud-prevention-month/).

In the first week, the campaign focused on online scams and fraud, including romance scams, phishing emails, job scams, buy and sell fraud, lottery/prize scams, tech repair scams, and impersonation scams. To protect yourself from online scams, use strong and unique passwords for your online accounts, and learn to recognize the seven red flags of phishing: urgent or threatening language, requests for sensitive information, anything too good to be true, unexpected emails, information mismatches, suspicious attachments, and unprofessional design.

The topic for the second week was business fraud and scams, examples of which include phone scams targeting businesses, business email compromise, mortgage fraud, money laundering in real estate, door-to-door scams, contractor and home repair schemes, unlicensed businesses, misleading and aggressive door to door sales, and duct cleaning schemes. Get Cyber Safe (https://www.getcybersafe.gc.ca/en/blogs/protect-your-business-cyber-attacks-cybersecure-canada) provides free training for small and medium businesses on preventing cyber attacks, as well as other useful resources. To better protect against business fraud and scams, consider keeping personal information private, remember that businesses don’t ask for banking information over the phone, and check the business’ website URL by typing the URL into a search engine and looking for the “secure” icon in your search bar.

The third week’s focus was investment scams, including investment fraud via social media, Ponzi or pyramid schemes, cryptocurrency scams, real estate investment scams, and offshore investment schemes. The Alberta Securities Commission offers a list of 31 red flags and investment scams that you can read about at https://checkfirst.ca/resources/fraud_prevention/ to better protect yourself from these types of scams. If you suspect that an investment that has been offered to use may be fraudulent, report it to your local law enforcement agency and the Alberta Securities Commission at 1-403-355-3888, as well as to your bank and credit card company.

The final week of March will focus on mass marketing and phone scams, including spoofed phone numbers (that is, numbers that appear to be from someone you recognize or even your own number), emergency scams, inheritance schemes, Canada Revenue Agency scams, and credit card interest rate reduction schemes.

For more fraud prevention information and resources, follow the Alberta RCMP on Facebook and X, formerly known as Twitter.

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