What's a fake invoice scam?

This is when a fraudster impersonates real vendors that your business works with in order to take advantage of your trust. The fraudster may claim that the invoice details for their goods and services have changed or they haven't received a payment. By impersonating the vendor, the fraudster may ask you to update the banking information on file so future payments are directed to them.

Warning signs of fake invoice scams

  • You get a request to change banking information for one of your vendors
  • The vendor pressures you to pay quickly to avoid legal action
  • You receive an email from an unknown vendor requesting payment for an invoice 
  • The invoice request and the accompanied language is unusual for the vendor
  • You receive an invoice from the vendor with a request to bypass normal policies and procedures 

Stay safe with our tips

  • Create a process for inspecting invoices before paying them, such as confirming you received all the goods or services you ordered.
  • Set up a single point of contact with the company you do business with regularly.
  • Don't feel pressured to act quickly. If an invoice or request seems suspicious, confirm the request by calling the vendor on a known contact number.
  • Pay attention to each invoice and compare it to previous legitimate ones you received from your vendor. Focus on the bank account details, language and the company logo.
  • Don't publicize your relationships with vendors, such as advertising it on your company website or social media channels. This can help prevent fraudsters from identifying your vendors and targeting you.

Notice anything suspicious? Let us know

Explore more about fake invoice scams

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre Opens in a new window.

Report fraud when it happens and track the latest data on fraud happening in Canada. 

The Little Black Book of Scams Opens in a new window.

Download the Canadian Competition Bureau's guide to scams in 8 different languages.

Business banking fraud (PDF, 935 KB) Opens in a new window.

Discover common types of fraud that target small- to medium-sized businesses.