Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Public Safety Alert, Police warning on Fraud/Police Impersonation scheme, Crime prevention advice offered

Public Safety Alert, Police warning on Fraud/Police Impersonation scheme, Crime prevention advice offered

Monday, June 29, 2015 - 1:08 PM
31 Division:  416-808-3100

The Toronto Police Service would like to warn the public about an ongoing scam involving fraudulent telephone communications, purportedly coming from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), police officers, and/or federal agents working for CBSA or Immigration Canada or a large utility company like Hydro One.

There have been several reports across the GTA of a telephone caller identifying themselves as a police officer, Canada Revenue Agent or a federal agent, and the residents will be arrested if they don’t pay the government for outstanding taxes or overdue bills.

Residents with call display/caller ID will see the name Canada Revenue Agency on their phone or a phone number associated with Toronto Police Service or the utility company. This is accomplished with spoof cards which can be easily purchased. Spoof cards are calling cards that let you pretend you are calling from any phone number you select, and that phone number is displayed on the receiving phone's caller ID.

Residents are led to believe these calls are legitimate due to the phone numbers displayed or the personal information the caller may have about the resident or a family member. These fraudulent phone calls instruct the recipients to wire-transfer money or purchase pre-paid credit cards.

If anyone does receive this type of fraudulent phone call, they are encouraged to take the following steps to protect themselves from fraud:

- Do not comply with the caller and contact the appropriate agency office to verify the information
- Contact them directly, with the number listed in the phone book
- Do not call the number provided by the caller
- Write down the number which appears on the call display or the number the caller provides
- Do not provide personal information over the telephone
- Restitution is awarded through the courts; police do not request or demand money
- Be cautious of who you are dealing with on the phone
- Do not provide PINs for bank cards to people you do not know
- Never wire-transfer money to someone unless you know them

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-3100, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at www.222tips.com, text TOR and your message to CRIMES (274637). Download the free Crime Stoppers Mobile App on iTunes, Google Play or Blackberry App World.

For more news, visit TPSnews.ca.

Constable Jenifferjit Sidhu, Corporate Communications, for Detective Constable Jennifer Rae, 31 Division

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