Protect yourself against fraud
October 11, 2017
A guest blog post from Canada Revenue Agency:
How can Canadians recognize scams and protect themselves against them?
Taxpayers should be vigilant when they receive an email or a text message claiming to be from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). If taxpayers are not sure if the message claiming to be from the CRA is legitimate, they should know that the CRA will never do any of the following:
The CRA will never accept payments by prepaid card of any kind. This includes gift cards and prepaid credit cards. The CRA will also never collect or distribute payments through Interac e-transfer.
Any request for payment by prepaid card or e-transfer claiming to be from the CRA is a scam! The CRA accepts payments through online banking, by debit card, and by pre‑authorized debit.
Emails from the CRA will never ask for personal or financial information, such as a taxpayer’s social insurance number, banking information or credit card number. Emails from the CRA will also never give personal or financial information. If a taxpayer receives an email that asks for personal information, especially if it asks to click on a link, it’s a scam!
The only time the CRA will send an email that contains links is if a taxpayer calls the CRA to ask for a form or a link to specific information. A CRA employee will send the information to the taxpayer’s email during the telephone call.
The CRA never uses text messages to communicate with taxpayers under any circumstances. If a taxpayer receives a text message claiming to be from the CRA, this is a scam.
How Canadians can confirm their tax status?
If individuals or businesses are not sure if a communication is from the CRA, they can always confirm their tax status with the CRA either online through the CRA secure portals such as My Account or My Business Account or by calling the CRA at 1-800-959-8281 (for individuals) or 1-800-959-5525 (for businesses).
What should Canadians do if they have been scammed?
If a taxpayer suspects they may be the victim of fraud or have been tricked into giving personal or financial information, the CRA strongly encourages them to contact their local police service.
Taxpayers can report scams to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. Their phone number is 1‑888‑495‑8501.
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