30% of Canadians victims of bank fraud

Montreal, April 17, 2023 - Three out of 10 Canadians have been the victim of bank fraud, and nearly a quarter of them have had to take numerous steps with their financial institution to get their money back, reports a survey conducted by Option consommateurs.


These figures are all the more worrying given that fraud has grown steadily in recent years. In 2023, a record 42,000 Canadians lost $569 million to fraud, according to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.


"These data demonstrate the importance of increasing the legal protection offered to consumers in the event of bank fraud in order to place greater responsibility on financial institutions," says Alexandre Plourde, lawyer and analyst at Option consommateurs.


The Léger survey also showed that only 26% of respondents had free access to their credit file online, even though this is one of the main ways of ensuring that they have not been the victim of identity theft.


The survey results also show that consumers are having difficulty using a tool newly available in Quebec to protect themselves against identity theft - the credit file freeze or lock. One in 5 said they had to subscribe to a credit agency's fee-based service to do so, even though credit agencies offer this mechanism free of charge. Similarly, 14% of respondents who tried to use this tool said they were unsuccessful or gave up.


Credit agency websites are designed in such a way that it's difficult to find the place to lock your credit file for free," laments Alexandre Plourde. These multinationals that market our personal information need to do more to help consumers protect themselves against identity theft."


The survey was conducted among a randomly selected sample of 2,500 Canadians via Léger's LEO web panel, from February 14 to 26, 2024.


This survey, conducted as part of the Industry Confidence Barometer also presents interesting data on consumer concerns in the context of inflation, debt and the consequences of publishing a negative review online. All results are available HERE.



About usOption consommateurs

Option consommateurs is a non-profit association whose mission is to defend the rights and interests of consumers. It focuses on issues related to personal finance, business practices, financial services, privacy, energy, debt and access to justice.


For more information or an interview :

Marie-Ève Dumont, Senior Communications Advisor


[email protected]