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“O” Division (Ontario) Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) want to warn the public of ongoing scams by imposters claiming to represent Government of Canada agencies such as Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) [Formerly known as Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)].

These types of fraudulent telephone calls are being perpetuated coast to coast, and have impacted victims from many different age groups and cultural backgrounds.

Steps to verifying and reporting a scam call

1. If you have call display on your phone, note the number where the call came from.

2. Hang up.

3. Look up the “real” number for the agency in question.

4. Call the agency to confirm or refute your situation.

5. Report the fraudulent call.

6. Share you knowledge of scam calls with your family & friends.

To report deceptive telemarketing, contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre online at www.antifraudcentre.ca or toll free at
1-888-495-8501

If you believe that you may be the victim of fraud or have given personal or financial information unwittingly, contact your local police, financial institution & credit reporting agencies.

Fact Sheet

Canada Revenue, Immigration and Counterfeit Currency Scams: What you need to know to protect yourself

Test your knowledge

Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) Scams

Question: Will the CRA make cold calls to collect outstanding taxes?
Answer: Yes, the CRA may call to request outstanding income tax returns, supporting documentation for claims made on tax returns and for other income tax related reasons. A written notification does not always precede the telephone call. However, when the CRA calls to request payment of outstanding debts, a notice of assessment will have been issued prior to the call.

Question: Will the CRA demand immediate payment for outstanding taxes? 
Answer: The CRA asks for immediate payment but will give you the option to make payment arrangements.

Question: Does the CRA accept prepaid credit cards, Western Union, and Money Gram as payment methods?
Answer: No, but the CRA offers payment options like online banking, pre-authorized debit. Visit their website for more information.

Question: Will CRA threaten to use local police or other law-enforcement agencies to arrest me for not paying overdue taxes?
Answer: No, CRA does not use police to arrest people for not paying overdue taxes.

Question: Will the CRA ask for information about your passport, health card, or driver's license? 
Answer: No. CRA will not ask you about your passport, health card or driver’s license numbers for payment arrangements.

Question:  What is the best way to verify whether I owe money to Canada Revenue Agency?
Answer:  The best way is to register for "My Account" to check or keep track of money owing to CRA. Register at: www.cra.gc.ca/myaccount/ or phone the agency directly at 1-800-959-8281 to determine the validity of the suspect call and any outstanding issues with your account.

Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Scams

Question:  Will IRCC make cold calls to collect outstanding fees?
Answer:  No. IRCC does not contact clients over the telephone to collect fees or fines to avoid deportation or other consequences.

Question: Will IRCC ask the client to provide personal information over the phone?
Answer: IRCC may conduct phone verifications but they do not ask for financial information. Call IRCC 1-888-242-2100 to confirm whether a call is genuine.

Question: Does IRCC accept prepaid credit cards, Western Union, and Money Gram as payment methods?
Answer:  No, IRCC doesn't accept prepaid credit cards, Western Union or those types of payment. Go through your bank or refer to IRCC web site for more.

Question: Will IRCC threaten to use local police or others to arrest me for not paying overdue fees?
Answer: IRCC employee would under no circumstances threaten to use law enforcement agencies to arrest an individual for not paying fees.

Question: Will a legitimate IRCC employee make threats of arrest, deportation, assault, or kidnapping?
Answer: Absolutely not. An IRCC employee would never behave in this way. This sort of behavior should be reported to the police.

Counterfeit Polymer Currency

What should you feel, look & flip for?

Feel:

Raised Ink: The ink is raised on the large number of the denomination ($5, $10, $20, $50, $100), the shoulders of the portrait (Queen or Prime Minister) and on the words "Bank of Canada" and "Banque du Canada."

Look:

Large Window: There is a large window containing a metallic portrait and building, look for transparency through the window.

 

Metallic Portrait: Make sure that small portrait in the window matches the large portrait on the note.

 

Metallic Building: Tilt the note to see sharp colour changes in the metallic building in the large window.

 

Frosted Maple Leaf Window: There will be a large maple leaf located above the large number on the front of the note. Make sure that it has a frosted outline and that it is transparent.

Flip:

Flip over the bill to see that all security features located in the large transparent window are also repeated on the back of the note.

 

Hidden Numbers: There are hidden numbers located in the large maple leaf with a frosted outline. They match the denomination of the note.

What to do if you suspect counterfeit currency.

Assess the situation to ensure that you are not at risk.  Then do the following:

  • Politely refuse the note and explain that you suspect that it may be counterfeit.
  • Ask for another note (and check it too).
  • Advise the person to check the note with the local police.
  • Inform your local police of a possible attempt to pass suspected counterfeit money.

Be courteous.  Remember that the person in possession of the bill could be an innocent victim.

Go to www.bankofcanada.ca/banknotes for free training material or more information.

2015: Counterfeit Canadian bank notes passed by denomination

$1000 0%
$100 24%
$50 7%
$20 53%
$10 6%
$5 10%