Protect yourself from Scams

There are a lot of scams out there and a lot of scammers who are trying to take advantage. You should watch out for a variety of types including mail, phone calls, email & text messaging.

We want to help you to recognize the signs of a scam and protect your personal and financial information.

We have listed the legitimate numbers at the bottom of this article you can call and talk to someone regarding the potential scam you are experiencing.

Recognizing a scam

Scammers are attempting to gain your personal and financial information. It can be a challenge to detect if a call or letter is real.

Below we will break down some quick ways to identify the main scams out there.

When in doubt ask yourself these questions:

  • Have you filed your tax return on time?
  • Did you receive your NOA stating you owe money? Or an unexpected refund?
  • Is the caller pressuring you to act immediately?
  • Have you received written communication from the CRA about the subject of the call?
  • Does the communication seem threatening?
  • Are they demanding payment immediately?

Mail Scams

You may get a letter in the mail that looks legitimate. It has the CRA logo and came in a very familiar brown envelope. However, there are some things to watch out for to protect your personal information and bank account.

CRA will not:

  • Set up a meeting with you in a public place to take a payment
  • Demand immediate payment by:
    • Interact e-transfer
    • Cryptocurrency (Bitcoin)
    • Prepaid credit cards
    • Gift cards from retailers such as iTunes, Amazon, or others
  • Threaten you with arrest, sending a bailiff immediately, or a prison sentence

What they may do:

  • Send you a notice of assessment or reassessment
  • Ask you to pay an amount you owe through any of the CRA’s payment options
  • Take legal action to recover the money you owe
  • Write to you to begin an audit process
  • Write to you to offer free tax help for your small business

Phone Call

If someone is calling you and saying they are from the CRA there are a few things you can watch out for. Unfortunately, scammers can spoof realistic-looking phone numbers, so the caller ID may not be enough anymore.

The CRA will not:

  • Demand immediate payment by
  • Interact e-transfer
  • Cryptocurrency (Bitcoin)
  • Prepaid credit cards
  • Gift cards from retailers such as iTunes, Amazon, or others
  • Ask for a fee to speak with a contact centre agent
  • Use aggressive language or threaten you with arrest or sending the police
  • Leave voicemails that are threatening or give personal or financial information

Remember that if something feels off, ask the caller for their full name, office location and phone number. Write that all down and call the legit numbers at the end of the article. You can then verify if the information the person provided was legitimate.

Text Messages

The CRA will never attempt to start a conversation with you under any circumstances via text messages, or instant messaging such as Facebook or WhatsApp.

The only time you will receive a text from the CRA is if you have enrolled with the telephone option for your CRA account. This will be a one-time code that you enter to access your CRA account.

If you have been a victim

If you have been the victim of a scam or fraud, follow these steps

1 – Collect your thoughts

2 – Contact your financial institutions

3 – Contact the police, fraud department

4 – Report the Incident to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre

You can find more information and important links about reporting fraud here.

Contact Numbers

You can call these numbers for the CRA to confirm that whoever contacted you is legitimate,

In Provinces In the Territories
Individuals: 800-959-8281 Individuals: 866-426-1527
Businesses: 800-959-5525 Businesses: 866-841-1876


Remember the best way to protect yourself is to ask questions. If something feels off, it just may be. No CRA agent will be threatening or demand immediate payment or else, scenarios.

Stay safe and vigilant everyone.