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People Are Pissed That Loblaw Is Demanding Their ID To Get A Gift Card

Canada's privacy watchdog has opened an investigation.

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Canada's privacy watchdog is investigating why Loblaw is asking people for copies of their drivers' licenses or utility bills in order for them to collect $25 gift cards the company made available for overcharging customers on bread.

"In the wake of a formal complaint to our office, we have now opened an investigation," a spokesperson for the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada told BuzzFeed News.

Loblaw is Canada's largest grocery company and owns several popular chains including Loblaws, No Frills, and Superstore. Last year, the company admitted to taking part in what it called an "industry-wide price-fixing arrangement" from 2001 to 2015 to overcharge for bread.

Loblaw escaped punishment for its role in price-fixing because it cooperated with investigators, but the company offered customers $25 gift cards they could apply for online.

Now that those gift cards are going out to households across Canada, however, some people are receiving demands for additional information, as first reported by CBC News.

People are really angry at Loblaw.

@LoblawsON so first Loblaws has the fucking audacity to defraud customers for a decade then DEMANDS TO A COPY OF A DRIVERS LICENSE OR UTILITY BILL IN ORDER TO GET 25 FUCKING DOLLARS (a pittance) go FUCK yourselves

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Fuck Loblaw and any other corp involved in this fraud People should be going to prison over this

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And promising to boycott the company's stores.

@LoblawsON I will NEVER give you a copy of my Drivers License or bill ....you committed fraud once how do i know you wont use it against me. I signed up in good faith or myself and my family will never shop any any of your stores again #fraud #Loblaws

Some even thought it was a scam.

@LoblawsON Applied for Loblaws card. Received email requesting copy of my drivers license or utility bill. Is this legit or a phishing scam? Singled out as others get their cards? What's up with the even more evasive proof.

Like, let's just remember who fucked up here.

I find it quite ironic that Loblaws is giving out gift cards for defrauding the public for years, but want a copy of my drivers license to prevent fraudulent claims.

Loblaw vice president Kevin Groh told BuzzFeed News it was asking only a "small percentage" of customers for additional information to confirm their names and addresses.

"Our plan to distribute tens of millions of dollars is a natural target for fraudsters, and we want to make sure this money is actually landing in our customers’ hands," Groh said in an email.

He said the notices demanding additional ID could be triggered by a large number of gift card applications being tied to a single address, multiple requests under the same or similar names, or "irregularities" in an application such as an invalid email or street address.

Ishmael N. Daro is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto. PGP fingerprint: 5A1D 9099 3497 DA4B

Contact Ishmael N. Daro at ishmael.daro@buzzfeed.com.

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