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Privacy and Security

Identity theft

Identity thieves steal key pieces of your personal information and use it to impersonate you and commit crimes in your name. They may physically steal important documents, or they may find out your personal information in other ways, without your knowledge. Once they steal the information, they may use stolen identities to conduct spending sprees, open new bank accounts, divert mail, or apply for loans, credit cards and social benefits.

Key signs that someone may be trying to steal your identity

  • Your bank statement, online activity or passbook shows transactions that you don’t recognize.
  • A creditor informs you that an application for credit was received with your name and address, which you did not complete.
  • You receive credit card statements or other bills in your name that do not belong to you.
  • You no longer receive legitimate credit card or bank account statements or you notice that not all of your mail is delivered.
  • A collection agency informs you they are collecting for a defaulted account established with your identity and you never opened the account.
  • Your chequebook, passbook or credit card goes missing.

Alert your creditors and financial institutions

  • Notify these organizations immediately if your bank cards, credit cards or identification are lost or stolen.

Consult financial institution(s)

  • Discuss whether to close your bank accounts and open new ones.
  • Ask your bank to replace your existing bank card with a new one and assign new PINs.
  • Ask how to report new problems.

Consult issuer(s)

  • Discuss whether to cancel your credit cards and get new ones issued.
  • Ask the issuer whether other accounts have been tampered with or opened fraudulently in your name.
  • Notify your telephone, cable and utilities companies that someone is or may be using your name to open new accounts fraudulently.
  • If identification has been stolen, contact all issuers to have the ID coded as stolen. Alert government organizations.
  • If your SIN is lost or stolen, or if you suspect that someone has been using your SIN to get a job, contact Human Resources Development Canada at 1-800-206-7218 or P.O. Box 7000 Bathurst, NB E2A 4T1.
  • If your driver’s licence is lost or stolen, contact your local driver and vehicle licence issuing office.
  • If you suspect that someone is diverting your mail, contact Canada Post.
  • Consider contacting the police. Filing a police report establishes legitimacy for your claim of fraud.

Advise credit agencies

  • Call Equifax toll-free at 1-877-323-2598, and call TransUnion toll-free at 1-877-713-3393 or 514-335-0374 (Quebec residents), 1-800-663-9980 (Canadians outside Quebec) or 1-800-916-8800 (U.S. citizens).

Numerous organizations are taking part in the war against fraud.