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Personal fraud has cost Canadians dearly

Personal fraud has cost Canadians dearly

Losses attributed to fraud against individuals exceeded $16 billion in five years in Canada.

This was revealed by the latest Statistics Canada data released on Monday.

In 2019, one in six people said they had been a victim of fraud in the past five years.

The average value of losses was more than $5,000, while the average loss was $600.

Most fraud victims suffered no loss (38%) or a loss of less than $250 (16%). However, some people suffered much greater losses. Approximately 3% of victims suffered losses of more than $10,000, and 0.5% of victims suffered losses of $100,000 or more.

Fraud more and more frequent

Of all the crimes measured during the General Social Survey on the Safety of Canadians (GSS) in 2019, fraud is the most common crime.

Just over 5 million people age 15 or older in Canada have reported being victims of at least one scam in the past five years.

Statistics Canada noted that “according to data reported by police through the Standardized Crime Reporting Survey, fraud accounts for 12% of the severity of crime index in 2021, double what it was 10 years ago (6.5%)”.

Thus, the number of fraud cases increased from 87,174 in 2011 to 168,483 in 2021. The rate of extortion, a violent crime akin to fraud, quadrupled during this period.

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