1) BEWARE of fake or shady lawyers, agents, application forms etc.
Immigration to Canada is achievable only through programs operated by the Canadian government or through programs run by the governments of Canada’s 10 provinces and three territories.
No other bodies or agents are authorized to run immigration programs to Canada.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Immigration consulting services can be provided in Canada only by Canadian lawyers in good standing and immigration consultants certified by the ICCRC (the national regulatory body that oversees regulated Canadian immigration professionals). Always ask for evidence of your consultant’s certification.
Our attention has been brought to several online posts promoting news of a “Canadian Visa Lottery Application”. These posts are misleading and readers should not interact with them. In particular Residents of Ghana and Nigeria have reported articles on a variety of websites by unscrupulous individual entitled either “Canadian Visa Lottery Application Form 2017/2018” or “Canadian Visa Lottery Application Form 2018/2019″ that promise readers an opportunity to apply to live in Canada. However, no such application form exists and the Canadian government does not issue immigration visas through a lottery system.
Some of the posts invite readers to submit their phone numbers and email addresses in the comments section. Readers should avoid providing any personal information through these websites.
For more information on how you can protect yourself from immigration fraud, please see the Canadian government’s publication “Protect Yourself From Fraud”.
For tips on how to determine if an individual is a real and good, or fake and/or shady immigration lawyer and/or consultant, see How to Find and Know Real and Good Canada Immigration Lawyer or Consultant.
2) No Country Affiliation with AfriCanada Inc. or this website
AfriCanada operates the blog and forums on this website to provide information needed for successful immigration application to Canada. We may provide links to immigration lawyers and professionals but we do NOT provide immigration services directly and we do NOT charge a fee for the information we provide in our blog website or forum.
No individual or organization is authorized to represent AfriCanada in any country. Our services consist solely in the general and free blog and forum posts on this website.
Please DO NOT deal with anyone claiming to represent AfriCanada. In particular DO NOT provide money or any sensitive information to anyone claiming to be a representative of AfriCanada, whether online or in person.
The Canadian government has published the note in #3 below on how to identify fraudulent immigration websites. Please read it.
3) How can I tell if an immigration website is a scam?
There are many commercial or private websites that offer immigration or citizenship services. Some promote legitimate representatives’ services that you will need to pay for. Others will offer false guarantees to take your money or steal your private information.
A website might be a fake or a scam if:
- you are asked to pay to access application forms and guides. IRCC only charges fees to process your application.
- Forms and guides are free on the IRCC website.
- the website offers special, too good to be true immigration deals, or guarantees entry into Canada, high-paying jobs or faster processing of your application.
- it looks like an official Government of Canada site but it is only in one language and does not have the Canada.ca URL or a URL that ends with “.gc.ca.”
- you must provide personal information, financial information or make a deposit before you even start the application process.
- there is no padlock in the browser window or https:// at the beginning of the web address to show it is a secure site. Even if the site appears secure, be cautious.
- the website was advertised in an email from a stranger that you did not ask for.
- you cannot reach anyone listed in the website’s contact information, or the website has no contact information.
- the company’s or representative’s credentials cannot be found on the site. Paid representatives have to be authorized.
- This means they are a member in good standing of the designated body for their group.
To avoid website scams:
- Do a Web search to see if anyone has reported any problems with that site.
- Contact the website owner by telephone or email before you do anything.
- Make sure your browser is up to date.
- Browser filters can help detect fake websites.
- Beware of websites advertised in emails from strangers that you did not ask for.
- Do not give out personal information unless you are sure the site is secure and you know whom you are dealing with.
- Read disclaimers, notices, and terms and conditions before you do anything.
- If you choose to pay for a service, understand what you will receive for your money before you accept or sign anything.
If you come across a fraudulent website, report it to:
- your local police, and
- the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.