Online Mortgage Applications: What You Should Know

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Today's Canadian consumer increasingly uses the Internet to do their shopping, banking, and even loan or mortgage applications. This manner of transacting affords us convenience, time-savings and a hassle-free market, with no lines and no crowds. Internet shopping also means fast access to a much wider range of products and competitive prices.

No longer must you call several brokers to find the best mortgage rates in Canada. You can find all the top rates posted online in one simple comparision chart, or complete our online mortgage application and have one of our qualified mortgage brokers do the shopping for you, free of charge.

If you have security concerns over completing an online application, the following tips will help you make an informed decision as to which websites you can give your personal information without worry. Stories of identity theft and fraud can be used to educate yourself on how to protect your personal information when online. If you fully understand which websites are legitimate, and the types of information that you should be providing, then you can enjoy the convenience that online transactions have to offer.

Secure online application Magnifying glass
  • Don't be fooled by spoof sites
  • Ensure the application is on a secure server
  • Never provide unnecessary information
  • Check the website for a privacy policy
  • Ensure you are dealing with a Canadian company

1. Don't be Fooled by Spoof Sites

Spoof sites mimic or copy legitimate websites. Because they appear reputable, people disclose their personal information without questioning the request. Spoof sites may attempt to display logos from reputable businesses or associations, such as the Better Business Bureau, or even major credit card companies. Remember that financial institutions and legitimate businesses will never randomly or unexpectedly ask for personal information such as your PIN or SIN numbers, account numbers or balances. Always check the URL of any website to ensure it is truly legitimate.

2. Ensure the Application is on a Secure Server

When submitting an online application, ensure the website uses a secure socket layer by looking for a locked key or padlock symbol displayed somewhere on your browser. This means your information will be encrypted for the online transaction, so no third parties will be able to read your information. You can also verify security by looking at the URL, or page address. A secure URL always begins with https, not http.

3. Never Provide Unnecessary Information

A reputable mortgage broker company does not need your credit card number or account balance(s) to complete an application, but may ask for your Social Insurance Number (SIN) to perform an accurate credit check. If you are uncomfortable providing your SIN online, contact the broker directly by phone.

4. Check that the Website has a Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy

A legitimate business should ensure the privacy of their client base is a priority. Search the business's website for a privacy policy. This doesn't guarantee the authenticity of a website, but most fraudulent websites won't provide one. If this is a legitimate Canadian website that gathers customer information, the company is required under Canada's Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents (PIPED) Act to post a privacy policy with a visible contact name and address, through which you can make any inquiries regarding the site's security.

5. Ensure you are Dealing with a Canadian Company

Only Canadian mortgage companies are permitted to provide mortgages to Canadians. Always check the URL on an application page to ensure that the domain name is Canadian. The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) only allows Canadian residences to use .ca. If you want to search the owner of a website domain, conduct a "Who is Lookup". Many domain registrars provide this service free of charge.

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