March is Fraud Prevention Month

Arshad Khan

To stamp Misrepresentation Counteraction Month, Toronto Police Monetary Wrongdoings Unit (FCU) is bringing issues to light and giving manners by which residents can instruct themselves and their friends and family.

An annual celebration known as Fraud Prevention Month aims to raise awareness of fraud and encourage people to report it.

According to the Financial Crimes Unit Commander, Inspector Joe Matys, criminals will profit from people’s good nature.

“If you are contacted by anyone claiming to be from a bank, or other business requesting your personal information, hang up and contact that business through the phone number you usually contact them through,” he said. “Never give your personal details to anyone over the phone or the internet that you did not initiate contact with first.”

“Criminals will say they are from the police, the courts or a relative claiming that there is an emergency and require you to give up personal information. This is then followed up with a request for cash. The police or courts will never solicit money from anyone and will never send anyone to your home to pick up cash.”

Matys offered a few helpful hints

  • Never say the names of your loved ones.
  • Never give out your personal details or banking information when solicited.
  • Ask questions only you or your loved ones would know.
  • Hang up, tell someone you trust, and confirm all information through trusted sources.

A program to engage seniors in the community and prevent crime was launched on March 1 by 31 Division Neighborhood Community Officers.

“Word to the Wise” is for people who live at 35 Shoreham Drive, 7 and 8 Arleta Avenue, respectively.

The most “generational politeness” groups in our community have either already received a presentation from every city crime prevention officer this month or will receive one in the coming weeks.

As a panel guest, FCU Detective David Coffey has addressed hundreds of listeners on Zoomer radio, providing advice on how to avoid various forms of fraud.

He and Constable David Huang of CPEU will later give a presentation on the Grandparent Scam to residents of a Toronto Intergenerational Partnerships Community. Constable David Huang will translate.

Fraud Prevention Month is driven by the Competition Bureau of Canada (CBC).

The theme for this year is “Tricks of the trade: What tools do con artists use?”

According to the CBC, “fraudsters are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their tricks and tools used to entrap victims, particularly when it comes to our more senior communities.”

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