Fabulous Frugal Finds

March Is Fraud Protection Month – Let’s Talk

Thank you to Capital One for sponsoring this post.

One of the best things I’m seeing online and among my friends is an awareness and craving for financial literacy. Over coffee, we’ve talked about how we learned about polynomials and the fall of the Roman Empire in high school (all very cool stuff, teacher friends!) but most of us didn’t learn about how credit works, or why it’s important to monitor your credit score. For many people, they learn these things the hard way.

Fraud Prevention Month is an annual campaign that helps educate Canadians on how to protect themselves and recognize fraud. It’s important because nearly 4 in 10 Canadians have either been a victim of or know someone who has been affected by fraud or identity theft. To this end, a recent study by Capital One Canada revealed that 93% of Canadians are taking measures to protect
themselves from fraud – this is a huge increase from the 2018 results which reported just 53% of Canadians taking action. This is so good to see!

Here’s the not so good news from that same survey. Only 11% of Canadians feel large companies are doing enough to safeguard their personal information. The overwhelming majority (91%) don’t have a clear understanding of what large companies are doing to protect their personal information and only 1 in 3 Canadians (31%) believe existing security measures are strong enough to
prevent thieves and fraudsters from gathering personal information.

It’s a tough position for both companies and their clients. It’s clear that the study shows confidence in companies security measures is low, but convenience and speed matter when it comes to making online purchases. In the past year, 63% of Canadians have chosen to store or save their credit card information with at least one online retailer for faster checkout, but 89% of respondents felt that companies could do more to safeguard that information.

To help Canadians protect themselves against fraud and identity theft, Capital One suggests the following:

1. Understand and take advantage of your credit card’s features.
Many credit cards offer liability protection against unauthorized use of your card. Several also offer opt-in fraud detection features like two-way fraud alerts and purchase notifications. If these are available to you, make sure you’re taking advantage of them.

2. Work with your bank or card issuer to help avoid fraud.
Report your lost wallet or card right away! Many banks have measures in place to protect your account. Capital One can put a temporary block on your card until you find it or confirm you need a replacement.

3. Monitor your credit score.
You should know if someone tries to open a new loan account in your name or, even worse, has used your information to default on a loan (this actually happened to a family member of mine and she’s still dealing with it through credit agencies!) Take advantage of free credit monitoring tools like Credit Keeper from Capital One. Credit Keeper provides users with weekly credit score updates to encourage frequent monitoring for suspicious activity, and offers information on open and closed accounts on
your credit report. Those unexpected changes to credit scores can be an early indication of fraudulent activity on one or more accounts.

4. Vigilantly protect your information!
Keep your credit card numbers, PINs, login information and passwords private. Always be vigilant about unsolicited or unusual phone calls, text messages or emails which may be phishing scams (fraudulent attempts to steal your information).

For more information on fraud protection and what to do if you’ve been targeted for fraud, visit www.capitalone.ca/fraudprevention

32 Comments

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  • These are great info and why not take advantage of all the protection available. Thank you for the reminder and the great info!

  • Such an important subject. I find that the phone calls are wicked at times. If you don’t answer seems like they go away after a few days.

  • Thanks for sharing this information. It is so important to safeguard our information in this day and age.

  • Thx very much for this very helpful information on fraud & identity theft, we definitely have to be vigilant.

  • As a victim of fraud, I can’t emphasize the importance of all these measures. Be alert to your Bill statements.

  • This actually just happened to me this week, I went on my bank acc. and seen a withdraw for 75.20 and had no idea where it came from, called the bank and they said it was a purchase with my bank card for some chinese clothing store, nope not from me. So had to cancel my card and get a new one, good thing I always check my acc. you just never know!

  • Been getting more phishing emails and fraudulent scam calls than usual, definitely prevent data loss, and be cautious.

  • Thank you for sharing this very important information. I do check my credit score occasionally, but I think I’ll start checking it more often. Just to be safe.

  • It is really important to get the word out about fraud. Anyone could face it at any time and in any kind of way.

  • Thanks so much for this tip, it’s so important to draw awareness to the presence of fraud and how to stay cautious!

  • This is such a great post. My mother-in-law was a victim of credit card fraud a few years ago and it was horrific for her and the family. We have since implemented many safeguards so this does not happen again.

  • such great points! thankfully i do not use my credit card much anymore. I have it locked away and only use it for emergencies or else i have no control lol

  • I have a capital one card and they were FANTASTIC when I was a victim of fraud once – I got an alert by email and so I knew right away it had happened and when I called they took care of things RIGHT AWAY. It was amazing.

  • I’m always cautious with my cards but have never looked into what protections they offer. Thanks for the reminder to check out this info.

  • Very good information and advice on protecting our credit card info. I check almost every day on our accounts to try to stay on top of things.

  • With everything being done online now and living in a digital world, it’s good to be safe and to keep an eye on your stuff for any changes