The Competition Bureau is an independent law enforcement agency within the Canadian Government that focuses on ensuring Canadian businesses and consumers thrive in a competitive marketplace. With objectives to protect consumers and promote a competitive landscape, the Bureau has taken initiative to enhance public awareness of how consumers can protect themselves, specifically against fraud.
This March marks the 12th anniversary of the Competition Bureau’s Fraud Prevention Month, which originally began in 2004. The campaign “brings together 125 law enforcement agencies and public and private sector organizations to combat fraud.” The Bureau and its partners are collectively known as the Fraud Prevention Forum and they host a variety of events and activities throughout the month to educate Canadians of the consequences of fraud and how consumers can recognize, reject and report fraud before becoming a victim.
Education and Resources
To make it easy, The Competition Bureau provides resources for consumers that wish to protect themselves from and educate themselves about fraud. On the agency’s Fraud Prevention page, resources and features are offered that cover a wide range of fraud prevention guidelines. There is also a calendar of events so users can track activities during Fraud Prevention Month.
The Bureau also has available on their website a consolidated guideline that details the process a consumer should follow in handling fraud— coined “Recognize, Reject, and Report.” Along with these guidelines, there is also a link to the Canadian edition of The Little Black Book of Scams, a condensed reference guide containing information Canadians can access to learn about the numerous types of scams and how to protect themselves. It addresses and debunks popular myths about scams, provides contact information of the proper authorities to report a scam to and presents a step-by-step guide for victims of scams to decrease their losses and avoid becoming victims again. Both consumers and businesses can utilize The Little Black Book of Scams to avoid “falling victim to social media and mobile phone scams, fake charities and lotteries, dating and romance scams, and many other schemes used to defraud Canadians of their money and personal information.”
Along with written guidelines for fraud prevention, the Bureau also offers numerous educational and entertaining anti-fraud videos that present the most common types of scams emphasized in The Little Black Book of Scams.
Fraud Prevention Month. With an entire month dedicated to public awareness of fraud and protection tactics, there have been several events that the Competition Bureau has hosted. The Bureau held two launch events for Fraud Prevention Month in Vancouver and Montreal, where–alongside the Better Business Bureau and other partners of the Fraud Prevention Forum–Canada’s National Top 10 Scams were announced.
The Bureau and its partners will be hosting more digital and in-person events throughout the month. You can find more updates on what the Competition Bureau has planned this month here. For more insight on what events the Bureau has hosted in the past during Fraud Prevention Month, you can find announcements and articles about fraud prevention efforts published by the Bureau here.
VISA Webinar. Visa Canada’s Head of Risk Services, Gord Jamieson alongside the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, recently hosted a webinar on March 4th focused on how consumers can protect digital transactions happening in the Card-Not-Present (CNP) environment.
Too Good to Be True Day. The Bureau hosted a twitter chat open to the public on March 8th as a part of the fourth annual ‘Too Good To Be True Day.’ Individuals joined the conversation by using the #2G2BT hashtag on Twitter. Bureau members (@CompBureau) hosted the chat to promote awareness of how businesses and consumers can prevent becoming a victim of online fraud.