SAINT JOHN, N.B. – Helping New Brunswickers protect themselves from fraud is at the heart of the Financial and Consumer Services Commission’s Spend Smart Cafés that will be popping up across the province this summer, including a stop at Sackville’s Cackling Goose Market on July 12.
According to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, New Brunswickers have reported losses of over $34,000 since the beginning of the year. A survey by the commission found that almost five in 10 people in the province, or 47 per cent, say they have been a target of a financial fraud or scam.
“It is scary, the number of ways that fraud can come at you,” said Marissa Sollows, the commission’s director of Education and Communications. “Recognizing the red flags of fraud can be the best defence against being victimized.”
The commission is collaborating with cafés and ice cream shops in communities across the province to share its resources and raise awareness of fraud prevention and smart spending habits.
“Fraud can be devastating to a victim’s finances and health,” said Sollows. “That is why we are going out this summer to share the tactics and schemes scam artists use so New Brunswickers can be better aware of the warning signs and can better protect themselves, and their loved ones, from financial fraud.”
Talking about fraud is a good first step to protect against becoming a victim. Commission staff will be on hand at the following locations to raise awareness of fraud and to hand out free snacks and prizes:
More information is available on the commission’s event calendar online. The commission will also be holding two summer contests on its online trivia game, Fortune, to help New Brunswickers test their fraud awareness and financial smarts.
The commission has developed many online tools and resources to address the concerns New Brunswickers have expressed about their finances, including information on spotting fraud, budget tools and tips for talking to children about money.
The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors: securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors. Online educational tools and resources are available at http://www.fcnb.ca/.