July 5, 2018 by Jason Contant
While the majority of polled Canadians (86%) believe they are increasingly at risk of identity fraud, only about one-quarter have identity fraud protection, a recent survey has found.
Conducted on behalf of Vancouver-based fintech company Mogo, the survey polled 1,514 adult Canadians. Eighty-six per cent believed they are increasingly at risk of identify theft and fraud, such as someone using stolen identity information like birth date, social insurance number and address to get a credit card or loan in the victim’s name. Despite this finding, only 24% of respondents “have some form of identity fraud protection solution,” Mogo said in a press release.
Several large home insurance carriers (including TD Insurance, The Co-operators, Intact, and CAA South Central Ontario) have cited identity theft as a major concern. The Co-operators, for example, covers up to $30,000 per incident on its home insurance, including costs such as lawyers’ and notaries’ fees.
Other carriers offer identity protection services or identity theft coverage. Last year, Aviva Canada announced enhancements, including an increased policy limit, to its identify theft coverage at no additional cost to existing customers. Italian insurer Generali Group offered its identity protection platform in Canada last year, while Chubb partnered with CyberScout to offer complimentary identity management services to all Canadian homeowners who have purchased the Masterpiece insurance product.
Mogo offers its own solution, MogoProtect, which monitors the Equifax credit bureau and notifies clients by push notification and email whenever a company makes an inquiry, which happens when you consent to a credit check while opening a new bank account or completing an application for credit. Clients who receive an unauthorized alert will be advised on the next steps to help prevent the fraud.
“As the world continues to move digital, we are seeing data breaches in the news almost weekly, putting every Canadian increasingly at risk of identity fraud,” said David Feller, founder and CEO of Mogo. “We believe every Canadian needs a solution to proactively watch for signs of suspicious activity and unexpected inquiries into their credit bureau as the consequences of identity fraud – financial losses, reduced creditworthiness – can be so severe and can take years to resolve.”
According to the survey, 85% of respondents believe that if they are a victim of identity theft or fraud, it will have an impact on their financial life. One in three (35%) reported that they know someone who has been a victim of identity fraud.