Online applications are now really online!
We’ve had “online applications” for some time now, but we’ve recently improved them—so that they are truly online.
Previously, our online applications were simply PDF forms that you could download and print out—which obviously meant you had to bring or send them to our offices. Now our application forms are also fully electronic, and you can do everything from the comfort of your own home.
To apply for a new account, you simply go to our website and click on “Open an account” in the top right of the screen. From there it’s as easy as pie. The site will lead you through all the steps required for the particular investment you are looking for, validating your inputs as you go. (That’s to reduce the likelihood of errors or missed information.)
After four main steps, you’re done. You’ll receive a reference number, followed by a confirmation email that will outline what happens next. Oaken Savings Account, RSP, RIF—whatever new investment you need, it’s now only a few clicks away.
Please note these new online forms are only for personal applications at the moment, as we continue to develop our online experience for commercial customers, which is more complicated by nature.
If you’d prefer to continue using the PDF forms, don’t worry—they’re still available on our website as before. And of course we’re always happy to meet in person or talk on the phone—so feel free to give us a call or drop by during business hours.
March is National Fraud Prevention Month
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) wants you to know that March has been declared National Fraud Prevention Month. Along with the RCMP, the Competition Bureau, and a host of businesses and financial institutions, Oaken is doing its part. We’re reminding everyone that fraud is with us more than ever now, thanks to the internet.
According to the CAFC, Canadians lost more than $70 million to scams in 2014, an increase of 32% over the previous year. The real number is likely much higher, since only around 5% of victims report the crime to the police. And most fraud now is online, because cyber scamming is easy to do and hard to stop.
Anyone’s a target—but seniors are especially at risk
If nothing else, scammers are inventive. They come up with every kind of scheme under the sun, from online romance scams to fake warnings about your utility bill. And no one’s immune. People in all age brackets and from all backgrounds have fallen prey to cheats and frauds. But criminals like to prey on seniors more than anyone, because they are often less internet-savvy than younger generations.
As everybody does more and more business online, it’s important to remember that there are shady operators out there. From choosing strong passwords to only using reputable websites, there are lots of things you can do to protect yourself. For more information, we recommend this link from the RCMP: it’s full of great tips about fraud prevention for seniors, students and everyone else.
Zooming into Spring!
As Oaken continues to grow, we’re delighted to meet the people who have made us a success: you. The recent Vancouver ZoomerShow provided yet another great opportunity. Our booth attracted lots of traffic, and we were very happy to see old faces and lots of new ones as well. We’ll be announcing the winner of the $500 GIC in our next Oaken Update.
You could join the growing list of lucky winners in May. If you live in Ottawa or are just visiting, drop by the Ottawa Convention Centre for the ZoomerShow on May 9 and 10. It’s full of great exhibits, lifestyle and financial advice, entertainment, and of course our booth—where you can say Hi, learn more about Oaken and enter your name for the next $500 GIC draw. We hope to see you there!
Spring into reading!
In keeping with Fraud Prevention Month, our reading list is all about protecting yourself from scams.
- A list of the 10 most popular scams in 2014, provided by the Better Business Bureau of British Columbia.
- Great advice from the Toronto Police that applies to everyone; check your local police website for additional tips that might be specific to where you live.
- As the CBC reports, scammers now use software that makes it look like they’re calling from a legitimate number, so call display is no longer the defense it once was.