Archived - Minister of Finance Highlights Importance of Raising Financial Literacy Skills

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Financial literacy a key defence against identity theft

September 27, 2014 – Toronto, Ontario – Department of Finance

Finance Minister Joe Oliver today spoke at an educational event sponsored by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) as part of their Community Connect Program. The Minister highlighted the importance of both government and industry in raising financial literacy, with a focus on combatting identity theft.

Minister Oliver stressed that education is key and that all Canadians must be vigilant about safeguarding their personal and financial information. Improved financial literacy will help, and the Government has taken many steps to promote financial literacy in Canada. A National Strategy for Financial Literacy is being developed in consultation with Canadians to strengthen the financial literacy of Canadians.

Together, both industry and government can better educate Canadians on how to protect themselves and their finances.

Quick Facts

  • According to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre’s annual statistical report for 2013, identity fraud led to over $11 million in losses in Canada that year.
  • Tips on how to protect yourself against financial fraud are available from the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.
  • Economic Action Plan 2009 established the Task Force on Financial Literacy.
  • In February 2011, the Task Force released its final report, which included 30 recommendations to help various levels of government and other stakeholders strengthen the financial literacy of Canadians.
  • In April 2014, the Government appointed Canada’s first Financial Literacy Leader, Jane Rooney, and is currently developing a National Strategy for Financial Literacy.
  • In addition to improving financial literacy across Canada, the Government has a “Consumers First” agenda. As a key part of this agenda, the Government took efforts to alleviate the costs of banking services for Canadians. In May 2014, it secured voluntary commitments from eight of the largest banks to make low-cost or no-cost accounts available to a wider range of eligible customers, including youths and students.

Quotes

"Financial literacy is a key defence against identity fraud, and is one of the reasons this Government is committed to improving the financial know-how of Canadians. I would like to thank the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada for hosting today's education session, and am pleased to be a part of it. Together, government and industry are working to raise awareness of this important issue."

- Joe Oliver, Minister of Finance

"Canadians cannot let their guard down when it comes to fraud prevention. We want to raise awareness of the threat posed by scammers and help encourage public dialogue about the need for continued vigilance to spot and stop fraud before it happens. Our organization applauds the Government of Canada's steadfast commitment to improving financial literacy, which will help combat identity theft."

- Cairine Wilson, Vice-president, Corporate Citizenship, Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada

Associated Links

Media Contacts

Nicholas Bergamini
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Finance
613-369-5659

Jack Aubry
Media Relations
Department of Finance
613-369-4000

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