Common Types of Fraud in Canada

October 26th, 2021
Common Types of Fraud in Canada

When we look at the most common types of fraud in Canada, there are many different ways to look at the statistics. There are the most common types of fraud that are reported—and many cases go unreported especially when there is little or no monetary loss. There are the most common types of fraud ranked by financial losses, and there are also the number of victims, real or estimated.

Number of Reports

If we look at the number of cases reported, extortion tops the list followed by identity fraud.

Extortion is when someone obtains or tries to obtain money or goods or services through coercion. Extortion includes things like ransomware or taxpayer threats.

Monetary Loss

If we look at the dollar losses, romance frauds are number one. As you can imagine, many of these frauds go unreported because of the embarrassment and stigma. However, with the number of romance frauds that were reported in 2020, an estimated $18.5 million was lost by the victims.

Romance fraud is when someone appears to be starting and having a romantic relationship with you either in person or online—often through social media. Then the partner claims to need money for something and the victim “lends” the romantic partner money. After receiving some amount of money, the partner disappears with the money.

Number of Victims

For sheer number of victims, identity fraud is estimated to be the most common. Numbers of victims are hard to quantify because many victims do not know they are the victim of this fraud.

Identity fraud is the use of your personal identity information, for example, to get loans, buy products, or actually access your bank accounts.

Fraud attempts are increasingly common, through phone, letter mail, and online. We suggest reporting to the police or government any fraud attempts that you come across, and to be especially wary online. Fraud can happen to anyone, and you should not feel ashamed to talk about it.

If you think you may need a criminal lawyer to help you, talk to Gagan Nahal in Vancouver at (604) 527-4769.



Gagan Nahal is a criminal defence lawyer based in Surrey, British Columbia, although he has represented clients across Canada. He works vigorously and tirelessly defending his clients. 

If you have any questions about this article or you would like to talk to Mr. Nahal, please call him directly at (604) 527-4769.