Canada is widely recognized as one of the most welcoming countries globally to immigrants with its humane migration policies. As a result, it’s also become a melting pot of cultures, made up of many diverse communities that have helped many immigrants start a new life in the Great White North. However, this has also led to the rise of Canadian immigration fraud, which takes advantage of foreigners hoping to establish themselves in the country.
Despite the global health crisis caused by COVID-19, these criminals have remained opportunistic, scamming people and cheating them out of their money while disguising themselves as reputable immigration consultants. To those who are none the wiser, it can be difficult to weed the genuine immigration agencies from fake ones. Here are four signs that an immigration agency is a complete fake:
They Use an Unusual Email Address
Real, credible immigration agencies will never use email addresses with Yahoo! or GMail as the domains, such as firstname.lastname@example.org. Even if the rest of the email looks legitimate, anything sent by a suspicious email address likely contains harmful links that will leave you vulnerable to hacking and malware. Downloading any attachments or clicking links from these emails can expose your personal information, so it’s best to look at the sender’s email before interacting with it.
They Request for Payment Through Chat Apps
Another red flag to watch out for is if the purported immigration agency processes your application and requests your payment through a chat app like WhatsApp. Since your application involves private information, it should be done only through official communication channels such as email or phone.
Fraudulent immigration agencies will also send you a payment link through the chat app instead of using a secure online payment page. On the other hand, reputable agencies will always link payment through their official domain, allowing you to make a secure payment online.
They Offer Services Without Certification
Authorized immigration consultants always offer their paid services with a registered Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCIC) or a certified immigration lawyer. The Canadian government authorizes these professionals to provide sound immigration advice to prospective applicants. They can also submit the application for you.
Fake immigration agencies typically ride on an existing immigration agency’s reputation or use its RCIC name to sound legitimate. You can verify this by entering the RCIC’s name, registration number, and company name on the ICCRC website or checking their Find an Immigration Professional page.
Their Website Provides False Information
Credible immigration agencies put a lot of time, effort, and care into the information they offer on their website. Everything must be updated and accurate, as these are crucial details that every applicant must know. However, fake agencies only care about your money, so they often provide strange and false information on your website that is rife with grammatical and spelling errors. For instance, their company logo and website URL may be completely different. Their address might be in a foreign country like Bangladesh while possessing a telephone number with a different area code.
It’s important to double-check this, along with any dubious information they may post, as it’s a clear sign that they are posing as an immigration agency intending to scam you.
There are many unscrupulous individuals out there who pose as immigration experts so they can take your hard-earned money and run with it. Fortunately, by keeping these four tips in mind and paying careful attention to their website and processes, you can identify real immigration consultants in Toronto from fraudulent ones.
If you’re looking for professional help from a trusted firm, please contact us at email@example.com or call 1-888-404-8472.