March is Fraud prevention month and the Brockville Police would like to advise the public of reports we have received this month of fraudulent schemes which have been reported:
Canada Revenue Agency scam is back.
Brockville Police are again receiving reports from local residents reporting they are receiving phone calls from callers pretending to be from the Canada Revenue Agency and claiming an audit has identified discrepancies from past years filed taxes and repayment is required immediately. The fraudster will threaten consumers that failure to pay will result in additional fees or worse the police will issue a warrant and arrest you. Fraudsters will request payment by a money service business or by pre-paid cards or gift cards.
Just a reminder to residents:
1) Canada Revenue Agency uses registered mail to contact consumers
2) Contact Canada Revenue first to confirm you owe back taxes.
3) Never provide personal information over the phone. Ask who is calling and document the conversation
4) Canada Revenue never requests payment by gift cards
In general romance scams involve the victim and the fraudster meeting over a social media or dating site. The fraudster will gain the trust of the victim through various displays of affection. While the fraudster is usually located in a faraway country either working or serving in the military eventually they want to meet the victim in person. It is at this time, the fraudster will seek financial assistance of the victim either for travel costs or to get out of the country they are in. Other variations include; a medical emergency, car accident or family emergency in which they need financial assistance.
Some incidents have also occurred at the local level where the victims actually out on a date and meet the fraudster who gives a false name and the victim later finds money or jewelry stolen from their home in addition to being tricked out of their money.
Often these occurrences go unreported because the victim’s do not wish to come forward because they were tricked. The Brockville Police are currently investigating two such fraudulent scams from February and in one of these incidents, the victim lost almost $26 000.
Warning signs include:
1) Talking about a friend or loved in another country that is coming to visit and needs help
2) Mentions of Western Union or Money Gram
3) Frequenting the bank more often and making unusual transactions
4) Large wire transfer to foreign countries