These are the 10 most stolen cars in Quebec this year

Basem Boshra CTV News Montreal

MONTREAL — The Insurance Bureau of Canda has released its annual list of the most stolen cars in Canada, and in Quebec, the Top 10 list consists of just two makes: Lexus and Toyota.

According to the IBC, these are the 10 most stolen cars in Quebec in 2019:

  1. 2018 Lexus RX350/RX350L/RX450h/RX450hL 4DR AWD
  2. 2018 Lexus NX300/NX300h 4DR AWD
  3. 2017 Lexus RX350/RX450h 4DR AWD
  4. 2016 Lexus RX350/RX450h 4DR AWD
  5. 2017 Toyota HIGHLANDER 4DR 4WD
  6. 2018 Toyota HIGHLANDER 4DR 4WD
  7. 2015 Toyota PRIUS V 5DR
  8. 2017 Lexus NX200t/NX300h 4DR AWD
  9. 2015 Lexus NX200t/NX300h 4DR AWD
  10. 2016 Toyota Highlander 4DR 4WDd

 

4 scams to watch out for this holiday season

Frauds, scams spike this time of year, says RCMP

CBC News

As shoppers gear up for the holiday season, police say fraudsters are also preparing to take advantage of those who aren’t careful.

The holidays are ripe for fraudulent activity, with various types of scams appearing around this time of year, according to Jeff Thomson, a senior intelligence analyst with the RCMP’s fraud unit.

Here are some of the most common scams Thomson said people should watch out for.

SIM swapping

Thomson said the RCMP has seen a recent spike in identity theft through what’s known as SIM swapping.

Fraudsters will send a phishing email, which appears to be from your service provider, offering you free data or something similar — and a link for you to claim your “prize.”

The link asks for personal information to update your cellular account profile. Fraudsters will then contact your service provider and, using that information, gain access to your phone.

“If you have your bank accounts, your social media accounts, email accounts — they can now start to gain access to the accounts you have on your mobile device,” Thomson said.

If you receive an email from your service provider with an offer, Thomson recommends calling them to verify it’s real.

Evolving phone scams

This one might sound familiar: someone allegedly calls from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and demands payment for back taxes while threatening the victim with arrest.

Thomson said the RCMP are seeing a spike in these kinds of scams, but instead of the CRA, the fraudsters claim to be from Service Canada.

“The Service Canada scam I’m seeing as the evolution of the CRA scam,” Thomson said.

Fraudsters tell victims their social insurance number (SIN) is compromised and then attempt a two-part scam.

First, they’ll attempt to coax your name, date of birth, SIN and other personal information from you.

Then they’ll say police or investigators need to follow up, which later turns into a demand for cash. Thomson said that usually takes the form of fraudsters telling victims to move money into a “safe account.”

Like with the CRA scam, Thomson said Canadian agencies wouldn’t call and ask for personal information.

Online shopping scams

As more and more shoppers turn to the internet to find that perfect holiday gift, fraudsters are taking notice.

Thomson said one scam comes in the form of an unbelievable offer for a wish-list item — but often it’s counterfeit or of an inferior quality.

To avoid being duped, Thomson recommends only shopping at well-known websites, reading reviews on lesser-known ones first, and using payment programs that have credit card protection.

“If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is,” he said.

Loan scams

This scam typically preys on victims looking for extra cash during the holidays.

Fraudsters offer loans, Thomson said, and then either take personal information or begin to demand payments.

Thomson advises people to be cautious and only seek loans from credible providers.

CBC News

 

Cornwall, Ont., woman loses life savings to terrifying ‘SIN scam’

Scammer posing as RCMP investigator bilked Julia-Shea Baker of $4K

The excerpted article was written by Laura Osman · CBC News ·

A Cornwall, Ont., woman has lost all her money after falling victim to a scam the RCMP are calling the top identity fraud in Canada.

Julia-Shea Baker, a 23-year-old server, lost $4,000 to the “SIN scam,” a new version of the Canada Revenue Agency fraudulent act that’s been used for years to dupe people out of their money.

It all started two weeks ago when Baker got a terrifying call from Service Canada telling her that her social insurance number had been compromised. The caller identified himself as RCMP investigator Steve Rogers.

You’re not being physically held hostage or held for ransom, but it feels that way. It feels like your freedom is on the line.– Julia-Shea Baker

The caller told her a car rented in her name had been discovered abandoned in south Toronto with blood residue on the seats and 10 kilograms of cocaine inside.

The “officer,” who gave Baker a badge number and a case number, told her that her name and social insurance number were involved in a drug and money-laundering investigation.

“My heart started racing, my palms started sweating,” Baker said. “I was absolutely panicked. I was terrified, absolutely terrified.”

When she questioned the officer’s story, he called her back from a different phone number. The caller ID showed up as belonging to the Cornwall RCMP. She looked for the number on Google and it seemed legitimate.

In September, the RCMP warned Cornwall residents their phone number was being “spoofed” — used fraudulently to make it look as if scammers were calling from the local detachment.

Call lasted hours

“Steve Rogers” told Baker the RCMP would take care of getting her a new SIN, but to protect her money, she had to transfer her savings to secure gift cards.

He instructed her to drive to grocery stores and pharmacies across Cornwall to buy up Google Play gift cards, all the while staying on the line to make sure she did what she was told.

After several purchases, her debit card was declined, so the caller told her to go to her bank and withdraw all the cash she had left to buy more gift cards. When she’d done that, he ordered Baker to call the bank to increase her credit limit, then buy yet more gift cards.

“This went on for four and a half hours,” Baker said. In that time, she spent $4,000 to buy 35 gift cards.

The whole time, the caller stayed on the line, carefully taking note of the gift card numbers and codes.

Threats, intimidation

Baker said she broke down in tears several times during the ordeal, but the man on the phone kept reiterating she couldn’t tell anyone what was going on, and if she did, she could be implicated in the investigation.

He told her that her messages and conversations were being monitored.

“You’re not being physically held hostage or held for ransom, but it feels that way. It feels like your freedom is on the line,” she said.

Julia-Shea Baker describes how she fell victim to a common scam — and why the story the scammers told her seemed to make sense at the time. 4:40

“Steve Rogers” told her he would call her back at 9 a.m. the following day to arrange to give her a new SIN, but he never called. When she called the original number back, the person who answered didn’t speak English.

That’s when she went to her local police station and learned she had been scammed. By then, the money was already gone.

“To realize that you’ve been duped, that somebody has taken advantage of your vulnerability … you feel dirty, you feel violated,” she said.

She said she’d heard of similar scams before, but the “officer” offered her enough information to make her feel the call was legitimate — and urgent.

She’s not alone, according to Jeff Thomson, senior RCMP intelligence analyst with the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

He said the SIN scam is the most popular type of identity fraud reported to his unit, and it’s on the rise.

From January to July, there were 800 reports of similar scams in Canada. By October, that number had reached 3,000.

Police say it’s an adaptation of the CRA scam that became prevalent a few years ago. As people got wise to the fraud, the scammers changed tactics.

Some victims give personal details to the callers, allowing them to steal their identities, while others are tricked into sending money, Thomson said.

Caller ID can’t be trusted as a means of filtering out scam calls, he said. The biggest tip-off is if the caller behaves in a threatening manner.

“The government’s never going to call you and threaten you into sending money, they’re not going to ask for your personal information over the phone in an unsolicited fashion, in an alarming, scary fashion,” he said.

His best advice: Just hang up.

Baker said she feels gullible for falling for the scam, and hopes others can learn from her experience.

“If it can help somebody else in the future, then at the end of the day it’s more valuable to me than $4,000,” she said.

It’s a new version of a scam that has ripped off thousands of individuals

Read more

Latest phone scam targeting Social Insurance Numbers: Hamilton police

BY

Hamilton police (HPS) are warning residents about an increase in online fraud involving Social Insurance Numbers.

Police say in many instances, people are receiving a recorded phone call that directs you to call back immediately, or press “1” to avoid prosecution.

Major Fraud Unit investigators are urging you to not call back or press “1”, saying no official administrative center will ever use high-pressure tactics, be disrespectful, contact you through text or require you to pay any money through gift cards or Bitcoins.

“There were no incidents of the SIN Scam previous to Sept. 2019 and now HPS has had 18 formal complaints as well as the numerous phone calls I get by citizens wanting me to be aware,” said Hamilton Police Staff Sergeant Greg Doerr of the Major Fraud Branch in an email to Global News Radio, 900 CHML.

Police say “when in doubt, just hang up.”

They say the scammers will direct victims to ‘pay their fines’ using gift cards or Bitcoin machines.

Frequent reoccurring scams involve criminals pretending to be government officials seeking money for taxes or immigration fees.

The Government of Canada provides detailed information on how to protect your Social Insurance Number, including who can ask for it, on their website.

Fraudsters in Canada Revenue Agency scam impersonate cops

By Chris Doucette | Toronto Sun

It’s a shakedown that has cost Canadians millions of dollars in recent years.

And now Toronto Police are warning that the fraudsters behind the Canada Revenue Agency scam have upped the ante by using caller ID spoofing to impersonate cops.

It’s yet another intimidation tactic employed by these extortionists — whose bag of tricks includes threats of criminal charges, arrest and huge financial penalties — and cops say one woman was recently duped out of $1,000.

The victim came forward Tuesday to report receiving a phone call a day earlier from someone claiming to be from CRA.

“He advised her that she was being investigated in relation to her SIN number being used for fraudulent activity,” Det.-Const. Jason Muto, of the Fraud Unit, said.

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