While 71% of Canadians are aware of the impact identity theft can have on their personal finances, including their credit scores, only 53% are taking steps to protect themselves, including managing social media account settings, finds a survey by Capital One.

Read: Canadians more confident about their financial futures: Mackenzie survey

Here are some additional findings.

  • Millennials are more aware of the impact of identity theft when compared to baby boomers.
  • Most Canadians protect themselves against fraud by not sharing their P.I.N. (88%) or regularly monitoring online banking and credit card accounts (76%).
  • Only a small number of Canadians have enabled transactional push notifications on their mobile device (20%) or regularly check their credit report (21%).
  • 71% say their credit score would be impacted if they became a victim of identity theft, yet only 12% use a credit score monitoring tool.
  • 39% know what their credit score is and 27% have a good understanding of how it’s calculated.

Tips to protect against fraud

  1. Take advantage of the features your credit card offers.
    Many credit cards have opt-in fraud detection features, like two-way fraud alerts and purchase notifications.
  2. Report fraud immediately.
    Tell investors to call their banks to report a lost wallet or card. Many banks have measures in place to protect your account.
  3. Monitor your credit score.
    Staying on top of your financial activity is key. A client should know if someone tries to open a new loan account in his name, or worse—has used his information to default on a loan. Leverage free credit monitoring tools.

About the survey: Responses were collected from 1,514 randomly selected Canadian adults aged 18+ who were Angus Reid Forum panelists from Feb. 2 to Feb. 4, 2018. The margin of error is +/- 2.5%, 19 times out of 20.

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