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Frauds & scams

Millions of dollars are lost through frauds and scams. Thousands of people are victimized each year. 

All segments of the population are impacted, no one is immune from this type of crime and anyone can be a target. We all have role to play in fraud prevention.

The following information will help you recognize, report and prevent frauds.

Types of frauds and scams

  • Identity Thefts
  • Online
  • Email/text messages
  • Telemarketing
  • Business
  • Mail
  • Door-to-door
  • Romance

Watch our video playlist highlighting some of these frauds

Click on the  icon in the top right corner of the video to see all the crime prevention videos in this collection.

Common techniques used by fraudsters

  • Rush deals – you are told you have a limited amount of time to take part or you will lose the deal, pressuring you to act now.
  • Scare tactics – you are told a negative result or penalty will be imposed if you don’t act quickly.
  • Secrecy – you are told the deal is extremely special and you are one of the select few invited to participate but don’t tell anyone.
  • Payment – is requested in the form of gift cards, prepaid credit cards, wire transfers or crypto currency such as Bitcoin.

How to protect yourself

  • Read the full contract before entering into any transaction or deal. Don’t hesitate to contact the Consumers Bureau or the Better Business Bureau for more information.
  • Understand any contracts, estimates or other documents before signing them.
  • When someone makes an offer at your door, be sure they are there for a valid reason and that they have valid identification before letting them in your home. Call the organization they are representing and if it feels wrong you do not have to let them into your home.
  • Considering a major purchase or signing up for a special deal? Take a moment to talk it over with a trusted family member or friend, if you suspect the offer may not be legitimate.
  • Do not disclose any personal information, including information about bank accounts, personal identification numbers (your bank card PIN), credit cards or personal finances to anyone.

Reporting a fraud or scam

Many people fall victim to frauds and scams. If you have been a victim of a fraud, it’s important that you report it. Not only can it help you possibly recover any loss, it helps protect the community from future frauds and scams. 

  • Document all information about the fraud including receipts, copies of emails and/or text messages.
  • Report your fraud to police:
    • If you have suffered a financial loss and the value is less than $25,000 CDN;  submit your report to us online.
    • If you have suffered a financial loss and the value is more than $25,000 CDN; call us at 204-986-6222 to make your report.
    • If you are a victim of identity theft;  submit your report to us online.
  • Report your fraud to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre:
    • The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre collects information on all frauds, scams and identity theft, whether you suffered a financial loss or not.
    • If you did not suffer a financial loss and are reporting a telephone, letter or internet fraud,  there is no need to contact the Winnipeg Police Service; report directly to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre  - 1-888-495-8501.
  • Report your fraud to other organizations:
    • Depending on the type of fraud, you may also need to notify other organizations, for a complete list visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website.
    • If you are a victim of identity theft, contact Canada’s credit reporting agencies to flag your account:
      • Equifax 1-800-465-7166
      • Trans Union 1-800-663-9980
    • If the fraud occurred via Facebook, eBay, an online buy and sell marketplace or a dating website, report the occurrence to the website. This can usually be done through an “report abuse” or “report and ad” link on the site.

Partners in fraud prevention

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre

  • The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre collects information on fraud and identity theft. They provide information on past and current scams affecting Canadians. They provide important information recognizing, reporting and prevention frauds.

The Competition Bureau of Canada

Manitoba Securities Commission

Criminals will say anything to take your hard-earned money. Be cautious!

Even though parts of a scam may change, and new scams are created daily, the best way to protect yourself is to be informed.

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