RCMP are asking residents to be wary of phone scams. (File photo)

Column: Scammers say it’s time to go to jail, even to RCMP

The View From Here by Martha Wickett

Full disclosure: My social insurance number and I are on the country’s most wanted list.

Though I may be bad, I am not unique. Felons abound in these parts, I’ve learned; many have received the same phone calls I have.

The call I received three days in a row was from “the legal department of Service Canada.” It states there will be enforcement action against my SIN. So, before the matter goes before the federal courthouse (on the lawn?) or I get arrested, I’m told to “kindly press one and speak to an officer now.”

The folks at real Service Canada have heard a lot about this scam. They’ve even heard that the scammers can change the number they’re calling from, so it appears a police department is calling.

A check with Salmon Arm RCMP reveals the scammers are dumb enough, or, to be kind, bold enough, to even try the arrest scam on those who do the arresting.

“I myself often receive notices/messages on my RCMP work phone indicating that I will soon be arrested for failure to pay taxes/tickets/etc. I simply hang up,” states Sgt. Scott Lachapelle.

Read more: Cat-phishing tops list of Better Business Bureau’s 10 scams of 2018

Read more: BBB warns of the 12 scams of Christmas

Read more: Phone scam uses false RCMP ID on call display

For myself, I also recently received a scam text from “Canada Post,” telling me my package has been sent back and directing me to tap on an innocent-looking link to confirm the shipment.

Lachapelle says new scams come to light every day – so many it’s difficult to keep track of them all.

“Identity theft techniques can range from unsophisticated, such as dumpster diving and mail theft, to more elaborate schemes such as these telephone solicitations.”

Identity thieves using the phone are often looking for: full name, date of birth, social insurance number, full address, mother’s maiden name, user-name and password for online services, driver’s licence number, personal identification number (PIN), credit card information (number, expiry date, the three digits on the signature panel), bank account number or signature.

The best advice, says Lachapelle, is to never reveal any personal information to anyone who calls, because you don’t really know who is calling you.

But, if you suspect or know you’re a victim of identity theft or fraud, or if you unwittingly provide personal or financial information, you should: 1. Contact local police and file a report. 2. Contact your financial institution and credit card company. 3. Contact the two national credit bureaus and place a fraud alert on your credit reports. That’s Equifax Canada, toll free at 1-800-465-7166 and TransUnion Canada, toll free at 1- 877-525-3823. 4. Always report identity theft and fraud. Contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.


@SalmonArm
marthawickett@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

City of Kelowna removing 800 lbs of material from new homeless camp daily

Director of community safety says it’s a difficult, but necessary task

Kelowna RCMP on the hunt for thieves at large

A subway heist and a camper break and enter are among the crimes to have occured

Kelowna engineering students honour victims of Montreal shooting

Event at UBCO tomorrow will remember women killed at l’École Polytechnique in Montreal 30 years ago

West Kelowna RCMP search for two alleged thieves

Anyone with information on the crimes is encouraged to contact the RCMP or Crime Stoppers

Central Okanagan School District introduces gender neutral language into policies

Edits include implementing more gender neutral pronouns like “they”

VIDEO: Federal Liberals’ throne speech welcomes opposition’s ideas

Trudeau will need NDP or Bloc support to pass legislation and survive confidence votes

Weak link in Sagmoen trial, defence says

Counsel questions whether search warrant police executed was obtained on reasonable grounds

VIDEO: John Lennon’s iconic Rolls Royce rolls into Vancouver Island college for checkup

Royal BC Museum, Camosun College and Coachwerks Restorations come together to care for car

North Okanagan MP says throne speech lacked specifics

‘Trudeau government presented a vague agenda,’: MP Mel Arnold

‘She was awesome’: Malakwa baker leaves U.S. holiday show

‘There are Christmas miracles, look at me’

VIDEO: Rockslide closes part of Highway 93 in Fairmont Hot Springs

Geotechnical team called in to do an assessment after rocks fell from hoodoos

Petition calls for appeal of ex-Burns Lake mayor’s sentence for sex assault

Prosecution service says Luke Strimbold’s case is under review

Northwest B.C. wildlife shelter rescues particularly tiny bear cub

Shelter co-founder says the cub weighs less than a third of what it should at this time of year

Independent Investigations Office seeks witnesses following arrest in Penticton

The male resisted arrest at approximately 8:40 a.m. and sustained a head injury

Most Read