Protect your business from fraud — Top 10 fraud-fighting tips for Canadian businesses

The best way to fight fraud is to consider implementing these top 10 tips:

Invest in your people

  1. Train employees on scam detection and prevention.
  2. Ensure this training explains the tricks that scammers use, such as bullying, negotiating for a lower price, creating an impression of urgency, and charging for unordered or unused goods.
  3. Ensure that employees know not to provide personal or business information or any banking details to anyone not known and trusted.
  4. Encourage employees to do an online search and independently verify any request that seems suspicious.
  5. Empower your employees to say no to bullying tactics and potential scams. Encourage employees to discuss scams and scammer tactics whenever possible, such as during employee meetings.

Invest in your processes

  1. Keep your filing and accounting systems well organized so it will be easier to detect bogus accounts and invoices, and to double-check every request for payment.
  2. Have clear procedures in place to make sure that invoices are legitimate.
  3. Limit the number of people authorized to pay invoices or place orders for your business, and establish an approval process that includes verbal authentication.

Invest in your networks

  1. When you are posting business information on social media and networking sites, keep in mind that scammers use publicly available information to target businesses.
  2. Invest in security systems to keep your office networks, computers, and mobile devices secure. This includes updating your security software, changing passwords, and backing up data regularly, and storing your backup files off-site and offline.

How to say "no"

Scammers expect you to answer questions in a predictable manner. To avoid falling in their trap, use the following responses during the first contact to end the scam before it can start. Some examples are:

  • I need to see an offer in writing first.
  • Send me a copy of our order.
  • We only pay with evidence of a signed authorization.
  • I do not agree to be recorded.
  • I need to consult my manager before making any decision.
  • I cannot accept a shipment without written proof that we've ordered it.
  • I'm not interested. Remove us from your contact list.
  • I will not give any financial information without being absolutely certain of who you are.

Further reading