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CRA Email Scams in Tax Season
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) might email you:
- to let you know that a new message is available on your CRA website account.
- to send you a link for a webpage, form, or publication that you requested during a call or meeting with a CRA representative.
- to let you know about tax credits and benefits for individuals or online services such as My account.
The CRA will not ask for personal information by email or send you an unsolicited email asking you to click on a link. This includes links to a refund, a form where you fill in the information, or a website portal.
The CRA will not demand immediate payment via Interac e-transfer, cryptocurrency, prepaid credit cards, or gift cards.
The CRA will never threaten you with an arrest or a prison sentence.
Email notifications from the CRA let you know when important changes are made to your account and when you have an email to view in My Account or My Business Account. When you sign up to receive email notifications, they will stop sending your mail on paper. They may send you a message that a notice of assessment is available. The CRA might also write to you to begin an audit, or to offer you free tax help (if you are a small business). If warranted, the CRA might mail you to take legal action to recover the money you owe.
When you receive a letter from the CRA, ask yourself if the CRA has your most recent contact information on file, or if you have an installment payment due soon. If you are unsure about the legitimacy of a letter, log into your portal or call the CRA directly at one of the numbers listed below.
What to do if you believe you have been the victim of a scam
If you receive a phone call from the CRA and are unsure, you can protect yourself by hanging up and contacting the CRA at the numbers below.
If you suspect that you have fallen prey to a scam or have disclosed personal information to a scammer, take immediate action and report it.
- Report the fraud to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or visit their website and follow the reporting procedure.
- Inform your local law enforcement agency, financial institutions, and relevant credit bureaus.
- If you suspect any unauthorized changes to your banking, address, personal or business information, or a benefits application has been made without your knowledge, contact the CRA at either of these numbers. For personal inquiries, call 1-800-959-8281. For businesses, call 1-800-959-5525.
You should also contact our office immediately so we can help.
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