It’s a new version of a scam that has ripped off thousands of individuals
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.
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.
Caller claimed woman’s SIN was used for a $100,000 fraud, drug trafficking
Members of the Temiskaming Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police would like to inform the public of several different types of frauds/scams in the Temiskaming area.
Police would like to remind the public to be aware before providing any personal information or money. Police are suggesting to inquire about the company that is asking for your personal information such as your bank account, computer information. Listed below are some of the recent scams investigated by the OPP.
The Romance Scam – Fraudsters take advantage of people who are lonesome. They may steal other profile photos to make themselves appear like someone else, use social media and lure victims. They may rush into the relationship, and promise a wedding or expensive items, once they meet in the victim’s country, or they may continue the online relationship over an extent of time to develop a trust level which usually results in the victim losing a significant amount of money, and the victim never actually meeting their so called partner.
Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) Scam – If you receive a fraudulent communication by email, phone, text, mail, from someone that claims to be the CRA and they request personal information, these are scams and never respond.
The CRA will never send you a link and ask you to divulge personal or financial information.
Compromised Credit Cards – Fraudsters have been calling the public lately claiming to be employees from the fraud department at a bank. They proceed to advise people that their credit card has been compromised and in order to verify they have the right account, to please read them your credit card number. In these cases, the fraudsters already have your name and first four digits on the Visa or MasterCard. This tactic is used to make them sound legitimate.
Do not divulge any personal information related to credit cards or banking particulars over the phone, by email, letter, fax, or any other means of communication. Call your credit card company or financial institution on your terms to verify/report any suspicious activity.
If you believe that someone is posing as a fraudster on the phone, hang up. Also, you can file a complaint through the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501. If you are a victim of a fraud or scam, contact your local police agency.
Important Safety Tips to Remember:
- Before giving money, ask questions. If the organization is legitimate, they welcome questions and will provide reasonable answers;
- Never provide personal information through the internet or email;
- Keep your passwords and PIN’s a secret;
- Do not write down passwords or carry them with you;
- Shred unwanted documents and make sure that your name and social insurance numbers are secure;
- Ask a trusted friend/relative/neighbour to pick up your mail when you are away or ask that a hold be placed on delivery.
FRAUD…Recognize it …Report it …Stop it
If you suspect you may be the victim of fraud or have been tricked into giving personal or financial information, contact your local OPP detachment at 1-888-310-1122 or the (Link) Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501.
The Government of Canada Competition Bureau: aims to increase your awareness of the many types of fraud that target Canadians and offer some easy steps you can take to protect yourself and avoid falling victim to fraud.
Excerpreted article was written By Laura Woodward, CTV News
The City of Saskatoon has filed a claim to its insurer in an effort to retrieve the $1.04 million it lost in a fraud scheme, a city spokesperson says.
Police investigators and banking institutions are also working with the city to try and recover the cash.
“The fraudsters are becoming more and more sophisticated all the time,” said Alyson Edwards, a Saskatoon police spokesperson.
Edwards was unable to go into detail about the investigation in finding the city fraudsters, but said officers are working with other victims of scams to draw parallels.
“You want to look at whatever evidence we have, compare it to whatever other cities have experienced and see if there are any similarities.”
The Saskatoon scam is one of the largest municipal scams in Canada,
Recovery ‘not impossible’
At least one IT expert has hope the cash will be recouped.
Jon Coller, the University of Saskatchewan’s chief information security officer, told CTV News it’s not impossible to recover the cash – as long as the money is still in a bank.
“Provided people act fast enough and the money hasn’t moved too far, it is definitely possible to recover,” Coller said.
In August 2017, Edmonton-based MacEwan University lost $11.8 million in an email scam. Officials transferred the funds into an account believed to be a university vender. In April 2018, the university announced it had recovered $10.92 million.
However, city manager Jeff Jorgenson told reporters Thursday that recouping the money would be a challenge.
“There is no guarantee that any of the funds can be recovered or will be recovered.
“What I can say is we’re doing everything we can do recover as much funding as we possibly can.”
Mayor Charlie Clark said he believes there is a chance the funds will be recovered, but for now he hopes the incident can serve as a cautionary example.