The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) are warning of an increase of a certain kind of fraud in recent weeks. They’re warning members of the community to be mindful and verify everything with their bank directly.
Certain technology is allowing fraudsters to change their caller I.D. to that of the victim’s bank. Callers pose as customer service employees at the bank and trick the victim into providing personal information, such as banking info and passwords. They’ll then tell the victims to place all their debit and credit cards in an envelope so they can be picked up and destroyed.
In March, Russell OPP received a call about suspected identity theft. The victim had received a call from someone pretending to be a bank employee and followed all the above instructions, handing her cards over to an unknown woman so they could be “destroyed”. Instead she became a victim of identity theft and lost more than $6000 that same day.
The OPP are recommending that residents brush up on their anti-fraud tips to protect themselves from this new wave of scammers. Banks will never ask for passwords over the phone, and they won’t need clients to provide any personal or banking information as they already have it all on file.
Anyone unsure whether they are the target of a scam or if they are a victim of fraud, hang up and call the bank, or go to the local bank branch to confirm.
For more information on different kinds of fraud, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website.