Most Worrying Credit Card Fraud Statistics: Focusing on the Canadian Market

Written By
Julija A.
July 11,2023

Credit card fraud is an immense problem in Canada. In fact, according to recent studies, the number of credit card fraud cases has been increasing steadily over the past few years. 

In this blog post, we will take a closer look at some of the statistics surrounding credit card fraud in Canada. We will examine how different age groups and demographics are affected by this type of crime. Stay tuned for more information!

Key Credit Card Fraud Statistics for 2024 - Editor’s Choice

  • 53% of Canadians were victims of financial fraud.
  • In 2013, there were 19,489 victims of identity fraud in Canada.
  • Over $379 million was lost to scams and fraud in 2021.
  • There were more than 2.8 million fraud reports in the United States in 2021.
  • 26% of people in Canada keep their financial passwords on a piece of paper.
  • The United States is among the countries where credit card fraud is most likely to occur.

Canadian Credit Card Fraud Statistics

69% of Canadians are more afraid of fraud than they were five years ago.

(CPA Canada)

If we look at the statistics, we can observe that credit card fraud is a problem affecting more and more Canadians each year. In fact, according to some research, total financial losses from credit card fraud in Canada have already topped $800 million

Having that in mind, it's not surprising that almost 70% of Canadians worry about becoming a victim of this type of crime. In line with that, 62% of respondents confirmed they are now doing more to protect themselves from fraud than they did five years ago.

26% of people in Canada keep their financial passwords on a piece of paper.

(CPA Canada)

Based on a survey on credit card fraud in Canada conducted by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) earlier this year, around a quarter of the respondents store their financial passwords in paper form. This number might seem surprising at first, but not everyone is comfortable using technology to keep track of their finances. 

On the other hand, 18% of those surveyed said they keep their passwords in a separate file on their computers, while 17% keep them on an app, on their smartphone, or a tablet.

24% of people have experienced credit card fraud.

(CPA Canada)

Although there are many techniques fraudsters use to steal people's personal information, credit cards are still one of their favourite methods. It's not surprising that almost a quarter of Canadians have had a credit card fraud case at some point in their lives. 

At the same time, 8% of the respondents said they had been the victim of email phishing fraud, and 5% shared that they had been the victim of identity theft. Luckily, there are steps you can take to protect yourself from fraudsters, such as being vigilant when using ATMs, being careful when inputting your personal information online, and keeping an eye on your credit card statements.

53% of Canadians were victims of financial fraud.

(Equifax Canada)

A study conducted by Equifax Canada in 2016 showed that 53% of Canadians were victims of some type of financial fraud. One-third of them (34%) confirmed they experienced credit or debit card fraud, 24% said they had been the victim of email phishing, and 12% had fallen prey to a telephone scam.

Regarding credit card fraud in Canada, statistics also showed that people between the ages of 35 and 44 were more likely to be financial fraud victims than any other age group. Right behind them were people between the ages of 18 and 34. People older than 65 were the least likely to be victims of financial fraud, with 45% saying they had experienced this type of crime.

84% of Canadians double-check their bank statements to prevent fraud.

(Equifax Canada)

When it comes to preventing credit card fraud, Canadians are taking matters into their own hands. In fact, the mentioned Equifax study from 2016 showed that 84% of them regularly check their bank statements to ensure there are no fraudulent charges. 

Other popular methods of preventing fraud include limiting the information you share about yourself on social media accounts (90%), regularly changing passwords on credit card accounts (39%), and checking credit reports (27%). By taking these simple steps, you can help protect yourself from becoming a victim of credit card fraud and other questionable financial practices.

Over $379 million was lost to scams and fraud in 2021.

(Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre)

Unfortunately, even if we take all the necessary precautions, it’s always possible to become a victim of fraud. And, according to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, in 2021 alone, Canadians lost over $379 million to scams and fraud. Altogether, there were over 104,295 fraud reports. Still, based on these Canadian credit card fraud statistics, only 5% of victims filed a claim with the CAFC, which is quite disappointing. 

The most common type of fraud Canadians reported was identity theft, followed by extortion, personal information fraud, and phishing. With a total of almost $164 million, the investment fraud category was where the most significant losses were reported.

As of July 31, 2022, there were 52,735 reports of fraud.

(Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre)

According to data collected by the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, as of July 31, 2022, there were 52,735 reports of fraud. The number of fraud victims was 33,302, whereas the total amount of money lost was $284.7 million.

The good news is that the CAFC managed to recover about $1 million as of August 1, 2022. This shows that it's important to report fraud because there's always a chance you will get some of your money back. More importantly, it can help prevent the same type of fraud from being committed over and over.

41% of Canadians set automatic alerts for every credit card or bank transaction.

(CPA Canada)

Fraud statistics for Canada from CPA Canada’s recent study showed that 41% of Canadians set alerts for every credit card or bank transaction. This is a great way to prevent fraud because you will be immediately notified if there's any suspicious activity on your account.

Once you do that, you can rest assured knowing that you'll be one of the first to find out if someone tries to use your credit card or bank account without your permission.

In 2013, there were 19,489 victims of identity fraud in Canada.


Based on Statista's fraud and identity theft statistics released in May 2015, there were 19,489 victims of identity fraud in Canada in 2013. This figure represented an increase of 14.01% compared to 2012, when 17,094 such cases were recorded. 2014 showed another increase with 20,611 identity fraud cases.

Identity fraud can have a significant impact on victims, not just financially but also emotionally. As it can take a long time to recover from this type of crime, it's important to be cautious and take all the necessary steps to prevent it.

​​Seven out of 10 Canadians provide their sensitive information solely on secure websites.

(CPA Canada)

Here's some promising news: according to the CPA Canada 2022 Fraud Survey, seven out of 10 Canadians only share their sensitive information on secure websites. 

This shows that, despite all the worrying statistics on credit card fraud from the previous years, Canadians are becoming more aware of the importance of online security and are taking steps to protect themselves. However, there's still a long way to go before we can say that everyone is taking this advice seriously.

Only 2% of Canadians have no credit/debit cards.

(Equifax Canada)

Another interesting fact that comes from Equifax Canada is that only 2% of people in Canada don't have any credit or debit cards. This means that the remaining 98% of citizens are potential victims of credit card fraud. And although there are many reliable credit card providers in Canada offering superior security features, no one is immune to this type of crime.

According to data published in the Financial Fraud Survey in 2016, 24% of respondents said they have just one card in their possession, 32% of them have two cards, and 40% confirmed they have three or more cards. The remaining 2% decided not to answer this question or didn't know the answer.

In 2014, there were 13,701 victims of mass marketing fraud in Canada.


Mass marketing fraud is a type of fraud that uses mass communication to solicit money or personal information from victims. This can be done by phone, email, mail, or even in person. 

According to Statista's survey from 2015, there were 13,701 victims of mass marketing fraud in Canada at the time. A year before, in 2013, there were 12,954 such cases, which shows an increase of almost 6%. 

Global Credit Card Fraud Statistics

The United States is at the top of the list of countries where credit card fraud is most likely to occur.

(Nilson Report)

Based on data from the Nilson report on card fraud losses, in 2019, global losses from credit card fraud reached $28.65 billion. More than a third of this global loss was experienced by cardholders in the United States, making it the country with the highest fraud rate. 

There were 650,572 identity theft reports in the US during 2019, whereas 271,823 of those cases were credit card fraud. At the same time, there were 19,285 victims of fraud in Canada who lost over $98 million altogether. 

In 2020, there were over 2.8 million payment card fraud cases in the United Kingdom.

(UK Finance)

According to Statista's survey on fraud cases involving payment cards, in 2020, there were around 2.83 million card fraud cases in the United Kingdom. This is a significant increase, especially compared to data from 2012, when there were only 997,507 such cases. 

Another astonishing statistic on debit and credit card fraud losses shows that the fraud losses on UK-issued cards surpassed £574.2 million in 2020. Fortunately, banks and credit card issuers managed to stop most fraudulent transactions, which totalled £983 million.

There were more than 2.8 million fraud reports in the United States in 2021.

(Federal Trade Commission)

In 2021, the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) received more than 2.8 million fraud reports. At the same time, consumers reported losing over $5.8 billion to fraudsters. 

According to the report, the most common type of fraud was imposter scams, with more than $2.3 billion of losses in this category. This type of fraud includes scammers pretending to be from the government, a family member, or a well-known company. 

Another common type of fraud was online shopping scams, with $392 million in reported losses. This type of fraud happens when a customer orders an item online and never receives it or receives a counterfeit product instead.

Bottom Line

Based on these credit and debit card fraud statistics, we can conclude that card fraud is a serious problem not just in Canada but worldwide. It's important to be aware of the dangers and take all the necessary precautions to protect yourself. That means you should never give your credit card information to anyone unless you're absolutely certain they're legitimate. 

Also, you should only share your personal information over secure websites. If you're ever unsure about a website, contact the customer service department of your credit card issuer to ask if it's safe. And, if you suspect that your credit card or bank account has been compromised, contact your financial institution immediately.


Can someone use my credit card number without my card?


It is possible to use a credit card number without a physical card. This is called card-not-present fraud and can happen in several ways. For example, if a fraudster has your credit card number and expiration date, they may be able to make online purchases or buy something over the phone. 

This type of card fraud is harder to prevent because some merchants don’t require a physical card or signature for the transaction. According to credit card fraud stats, CNP fraud cases led to $537.3 million in losses in 2015.

How long does it take to catch a credit card theft?


It can take a while to catch credit card fraud because time is needed for the fraudulent charges to appear on your statement. And once you report the fraud, the credit card issuer will need to investigate the charges. 

If you look at some credit card theft statistics, you will see that it can sometimes take up to 35 days for the bank to resolve the issue, especially if they need to conduct a thorough investigation.

What is a skimmer?


A skimmer is a device that can be attached to a card reader in order to steal credit card information. Fraudsters usually do this at gas stations, ATMs, or other highly frequented places where people use their credit cards. Skimmers can be hard to spot, but you should always check for anything that looks out of place before using your card.

What accounts for the greatest percentage of card fraud?


Based on some credit card fraud statistics, the majority of credit card fraud cases are perpetrated through card-not-present transactions online or over the phone. In fact, 76% of all card fraud cases in Canada in 2015 came from these types of transactions. 

This was followed by counterfeit cards, which accounted for 16% of fraudulent transactions and lost or stolen cards, which accounted for 5% of all fraud cases.


About author

Albert Einstein is said to have identified compound interest as mankind’s greatest invention. That story’s probably apocryphal, but it conveys a deep truth about the power of fiscal policy to change the world along with our daily lives. Civilization became possible only when Sumerians of the Bronze Age invented money. Today, economic issues influence every aspect of daily life. My job at Fortunly is an opportunity to analyze government policies and banking practices, sharing the results of my research in articles that can help you make better, smarter decisions for yourself and your family.

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