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Visa Canada Finds Younger Canadians Taking Risks With Their Financial Information

Fraud Prevention Month survey finds young people oversharing, putting themselves at risk of payment card fraud

TORONTO, Feb. 26, 2013 /CNW/ - A new survey released today by Visa Canada to mark the start of Fraud Prevention Month has uncovered a concerning trend among young people. A significant number of young Canadians who regularly post personal information on social network sites are putting themselves at unnecessary risk by mirroring similar oversharing behaviour offline with their payment card information.

Survey results found that almost half (45 per cent) of 18-34 year olds reported taking risks with their payment card information, such as loaning their card to someone or sharing their payment card information over email, phone or text. Individuals in this age group also reported the highest level of online sharing activities, including keeping an open profile on a social network site, posting to a social media site at least once a day, publically sharing photos, and posting their employment history online.

Among those aged 35 and older, a significantly lower number of respondents (32 per cent) reported taking risks with their payment card information. This group also reported less sharing of personal information online.

'While Canadians as a whole are becoming more aware of fraud risks, many are still engaging in risky behaviours when it comes to payment cards - and young Canadians are especially vulnerable because they are so used to sharing personal information online," said Gord Jamieson, Head of Payment System Risk. "But many young people don't realize they are putting themselves at risk for fraud when they share their personal payment card information, both online and offline."

Survey results show that oversharing financial information can indeed leave individuals vulnerable to fraud. Among respondents who reported engaging in risky behavior, 43 per cent had experienced some form of payment card fraud. Conversely, among those who had not engaged in risky behaviour, only 19 per cent had been victims.

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