On October 30, 2023, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) took a decisive stand against digital threats by issuing a $40,000 penalty to Sami Medouni, a Quebec resident, for allegedly orchestrating a high-volume phishing campaign. The Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer of the CRTC, Steven Harroun, revealed that the investigation stemmed from a phone company’s alert about a potential scam affecting their customers.

Between December 22, 2020, and January 14, 2021, Mr. Medouni allegedly employed fraudulently obtained telephone numbers to send over 30,000 phishing text messages to Canadians. These messages, mimicking well-known brands, sought to extract sensitive information such as credit card numbers and banking credentials.

Harroun emphasized the serious implications of such phishing scams, stating, “These phishing scams are not only a nuisance for Canadians, but they also put our personal and financial information at risk.” He urged Canadians to remain vigilant and report suspicious activities even as Cyber Security Awareness Month concludes.

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Quick Facts and links:

  • The CRTC collaborates with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada and the Competition Bureau to enforce the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) and with the RCMP’s National Cybercrime Coordination Centre to safeguard Canadians from online threats.
  • Canadians can report unsolicited phone calls to the National Do Not Call List operator, spam, or electronic threats to the Spam Reporting Centre, and losses due to scams to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.