Scam Awareness Brochure

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for Niagara College Students

WHAT IS A SCAM OR FRAUD? A scam or fraud is a dishonest scheme by someone who wants to steal money from you, or trick you into other illegal activities. People who commit this crime are called scammers or fraudsters. Newcomers to Canada are more vulnerable to scam/frauds as they are not as familiar with norms/customs and processes in Canada. This brochure offers information to help you identify and report scams or fraud. If you are still unsure of what a scam/fraud is, how to identify one, or feel as though you have been scammed, please reach out to your Student Advisor and they will be happy to assist you. .

Types of Scams/Fraud • Telemarketing scams

• Mail scams

• Online scams

• Door-to-door scams

• Email and text messages

• Housing scams


• Immigration fraud

• Identity theft

/Citizenship fraud

HOW TO REPORT A SCAM? Niagara College Campus Security Tel: 905-735-2211 ext. 6999. Visit: Welland Campus S101, NOTL Campus N102B Niagara College Student Administrative Council (NCSAC) You have the option to meet with a lawyer on campus Visit: Welland Campus SA 205, NOTL Campus N003 Niagara Regional Police Fraud Unit Tel: (905) 688-4111 Landlord and/or Rental Fraud Web: Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC): Web: Tel: 1-888-495-8501 Citizenship Fraud Email: Canada Revenue Agency (CRA): Web:

Housing Scams/Fraud How can I identify a housing scam? • The “landlord” requires payment in cash or through

a wire transfer before showing property. • The “landlord” requests large amount of money,

or multiple months’ rent in advance to secure a place. • The advertisement only shows the outside of the property

or photos that do not match the actual house. • The “landlord” does not provide proper contact information

for you to contact him/her. • You receive an email from a student outside of

North America requesting that you rent out your place. Usually the email will sound odd, and there will be grammar/spelling errors. • A potential roommate/tenant offers to send you a

high-value cashier’s check to pay for the rental. Usually they will give excuses as to why they are sending extra money for the cost of the rental. • A potential roommate/tenant claims that a confirmation

code is required before he/she can withdraw your money. Once you have wired money to them, it is gone.

REMEMBER • Request a lease/contract. Read and

review it thoroughly before you sign • Contact Equifax and TransUnion if

you have given sensitive information on applications • Contact your campus Housing

Coordinator if you are unsure about specific Canadian laws

Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) Scams/Fraud • IRCC will never ask for

payment via email or over phone. • CIC will never ask to verify

personal information such as date of birth, Social Insurance Number (SIN) number, bank information etc. • CIC will never call and threaten you with deportation

or jail. • The caller will sound aggressive over the phone

requesting to pay fees immediately and stating you will face deportation, loss of passport and citizenship.

How can I tell if an immigration website is a scam? • The website offers special, too good to be true immigration

deals, or guarantees entry in Canada, high-paying jobs or faster processing of your application. • It looks like an official government of Canada site,

but it is in one language only and does not have the URL or a URL that ends with “”. • It asks you to provide personal information, financial

information or make a deposit before you even start the application process. • There is no padlock symbol in the window browser or

https:// at the beginning of the web address to show it is a secure site. • You cannot reach anyone listed in the website’s contact

information, or the website has no contact information.

Job Scams/Fraud How can I identify and protect myself from a job scam? • If a job sounds too good to be true, it probably is. • You are contacted by a potential employer and offered a job

where you can work from home, set your own hours, and all you need to do is deposit money into their bank account. • An “employer” asks you to purchase bitcoin, and then send

the bitcoin to another account with the incentive that you can keep a “commission” from the money deposited. • You receive an email from a potential employer that does

not look official and does not have a company signature and job contracts are not on company letterhead, etc. • If you receive a cheque or funds deposited to your account

in response to a job application, advise your financial institution immediately. • Be mindful where you post your resume; scammers use

legitimate websites to seek out victims.

Safety tips for job applicants: Do not provide personal or sensitive information in your resume, such as • Social Insurance Number (SIN) • Age, martial status or date of birth • Driver’s licence • Health card number • Any banking or financial institution

that has your credit card or bank numbers and Personal Identification Numbers (PIN)

Dating And Romance Scams Despite the many legitimate dating applications and websites, there are many dating and romance scams. Be mindful of who you share personal information with.

How can I identify a dating/romance scam? • Some dating and romance scams work by setting up dating

websites where you are told to pay for each email or message you send and receive. • The scammer will try to send you vague-sounding messages

filled with talk of love and desire. • The scammer might send you messages with details of their

home country or town that may not refer to you. • Scammers may steal other attractive looking people’s photos

to get your attention. • Scammers may message you to pay online before meeting

in person.

What not to do: • Never send exposing photos to anyone online. They may

threaten to post your photos online if you do not send them large amounts of money. • Never give out personal banking information or other personal

information in an email or online chat from your computer or device. • Never send money even if they send you small gifts or express

their “love”.