Protect yourself from COVID-19 scams

There has been a rise of scams that play on fears related to COVID-19, including: 

  • Using seemingly legitimate COVID-19 related websites or links to introduce malware to your device
  • Recommending you download COVID-19 related apps or software through a website or email
  • Recommending medical advice and offering fake products claiming to treat and prevent COVID-19

Criminals may also take advantage of the current situation to use old scam tactics, including:

Telephoning you and claiming to be from:

  • CIBC and requesting your banking information
  • A health or government agency, like Health Canada, World Health Organization or a local hospital, and requesting your personal information (unless you’ve been tested)

Impersonating essential services such as:

  • A utility company or service provider to ask for funds due to a late or unexcepted charge
  • The CRA or RCMP and demanding immediate payment through cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, CIBC Global Money Transfer or a wire transfer from a money sending service

Taking advantage of the present situation by impersonating:

  • Small business suppliers requesting a payment, or providing updated payment instructions
  • A charity or organization and asking for a donation

The communication can be through call, text or email. Make sure you understand the nature of the communication before responding and providing any personal or banking information. If you’re not sure, research the company, the phone number and the person or organization contacting you.  Verify any changes to payment instructions verbally.

Always remember, CIBC will have your personal information on file and won’t ask you to share such information. Never share your personal information, including your Social Insurance Number (SIN) or banking information, like your PINs or passwords with anyone.