Identify theft occurs when someone collects or acquires another person’s personal information for criminal purposes. The information can then be used to acquire services, credit or perform transactions without the victim’s consent, usually leading to outstanding debts and negatively impacted credit.
How Can I Protect Myself from Identity Theft?
- Shred documents that contain your personal information.
- Keep identity documents in a secure place and carry only what you need with you.
- Keep your computing devices updated with online security such as firewalls and virus protection.
- When shopping or banking online, keep an eye out to ensure that the website’s URL contains “https” as this indicates it’s secure.
- Ensure to periodically verify your credit report, bank and credit card statements and promptly report any discrepancies.
- Ensure that your mobile device is password-protected.
- Secure your credit card and bank accounts with challenging passwords that cannot be easily guessed.
- Beware of email fraud and phishing scams.
Signs That You May be a Victim of Identity Theft.
- Receiving statements for credit cards or other credit-lending services that you did not authorize or activate.
- Receiving collection notices or calls for debts that you did not incur.
- Unknown or unrecognized credit inquiries or accounts open on your credit report.
Steps You Can Take if You’re a Victim of Identity Theft.
- Report the incident to your local police and note the report number as it may be required by the service providers where the fraud occurred.
- Report the incident to local police and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (1 888 495-8501) http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm
- Contact the fraud departments at these credit bureaus:
- Equifax: 1 866 828-5961
- Trans Union: 1 800 663-9980 (Quebec residents contact 1 877 713-3393)
- Contact the fraud department of the service or credit provider where the unauthorized inquiries, transactions or account activations occurred. Matters related to unauthorized activity pertaining to Rogers service can be reported to Customer Service.
Additional information on common scams:
Additional information on fraud: