The Competition Bureau of Canada has published the The Little Black Book of Scams 2nd Edition and it is available online at https://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/eic/site/cb-bc.nsf/eng/04333.htm. The information is invaluable and should be of interest to virtually everyone. Over the next few months we will be publishing the information from the The Little Black Book of Scams 2nd Edition, one scam at a time. Last week we published Door to Door Scams. Today the topic is:
Stay up to date on the schemes targeting businesses!
Organizations of any size can still be duped by clever frauds, so make sure you know about them. A typical one is the directory fraud. A fraudster sends your company a proposal for a listing or advertisement in a magazine, journal or business directory, or an online directory. They’ll call to confirm the address and other details. Then the accounting department will receive and pay the bill, unaware that your company never actually order or authorized the service. Another company fraud is the health and safety products scam. You might receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from the provincial government, telling you that your first-aid kits need to be replaced or you have to update your company’s health and safety training. In both cases, you may be told to act quickly. One other possible scam is the office supply scam, which involves you receiving and being charged for items you didn’t order. In many cases, scammers will hound you to pay the amount they claim you owe. They will even trick you into believing that they will report you to a collection agency.
Tips to protect yourself:
- Educate yourself, your employees and your co-workers to be cautious of unsolicited calls.
- Create a list of companies that are typically used by your business.
- Limit the number of staff who can approve purchases and pay bills.
- Clearly define procedures for verification, payment and management of accounts and invoices.
- Contact your province’s regulator to know your legal obligations.
- Fraudsters will use company names or logos similar to those of known businesses to make their invoices seem real. Inspect invoices carefully before making any payments.
If you suspect a scam, always report it.
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, managed by the RCMP, the Competition Bureau and the Ontario Provincial Police, has plenty of information on fraud. Power up today by visiting www.antifraudcentre.ca!
Additional organizations to contact depending on the situation:
Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre 1-888-495-8501 www.antifraudcentre.ca
Competition Bureau 1-800-348-5358 www.competitionbureau.gc.ca
Consumer Affairs www.consumerhandbook.ca
Securities Administrator www.securities-administrators.ca
Ontario Provincial Police 1-888-310-1122
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