On your side – reducing debit card fraud in Canada

Fraud Prevention Month is nearly over for another year, yet the need to protect your small business from scam artists is timeless. In this selection on preventing debit card fraud, Interac points out some trends and stats to help merchants stay informed and prepared to prevent debit fraud.


Fraud. Such a pesky little word. What does it mean to you? We so often focus on the consumer side of things, but what about merchants?

New figures released by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business show that the average small business incurred approximately $6,200 in fraud last year. No matter the size of your business, the effect of fraud can be detrimental to your bottom line and to your mental health. That’s why at Interac, we’ve been working hard to send a clear message to criminals: fraud will not be tolerated on our network.

Security is core to our business, and we’ve committed to implementing innovative detection tools and technologies like EMV chip processing to keep Canadians protected. In fact, as a result of our collaboration with service providers, merchants, and financial institutions to transition all debit cards, ABM’s and POS terminals to chip technology, we’ve reduced debit card fraud from skimming by an impressive 92% since 2009. This is a significant number. What’s even more impressive is that only $2 million of that occurred inside Canada. The remaining $9.8 million happened outside of our borders, on terminals that still accept magnetic stripe transactions. If your point-of-sale terminal has not yet been converted, please talk to your payment service provider to get an update.


Some might assume that because the economy is slow, consumers aren’t spending as much and our fraud numbers are bound to drop as a result. But in 2015, we saw steady growth over previous years. Over 5.91 billion debit transactions took place on our network, worth $347 billion. That’s up 5 per cent from 2014. The lesson? Criminals just don’t like us.


While we are always happy to share this ongoing success story, we’re equally eager to remind merchants that much of the power to fight fraud rests in their own hands. Small business owners can easily empower themselves with knowledge of how to stop fraud before it starts.


Merchant resources

We have a number of fraud prevention resources on interac.ca that small business owners might find useful:

A trusted option for small business owners

In addition to providing secure solutions, our goal has always been to offer merchants a low-cost payment acceptance option. We recognize that payment acceptance is but one of many boxes you need to check when it comes to managing your business, so we strive to be a reliable provider and trusted partner. Interac Debit is flat fee regardless of purchase price, has no chargebacks, and offers the peace of mind with real-time, secure payments.

You can order free POS materials that inform your customers that you accept Interac Debit and Interac Flash at our Merchant POS Centre.

Talk to us

We recognize and admire the courage required to act on an entrepreneurial spirit and love hearing success stories from small businesses across the country. We encourage you to connect with us on social media to continue the conversation, or contact us directly if you have any questions, fraud-related or otherwise, at info@interac.ca.

Twitter: @interac
Facebook: facebook.com/interac
Instagram: instagram.com/interac

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