Hamilton, Ontario,

Don’t Become a Victim of Online Fraud

Hamilton Police Major Fraud has been receiving daily reports or complaints about online frauds since the reopening of the Province.

Scams include the victim receiving a call from a fraudster pretending to be a government official, usually the Canada Revenue Agency or Service Canada. The fraudster will pressure victims into transferring money to them under fear of arrest or having bank accounts frozen. The fraudster will also ask for personal identification information.

In many instances, a recorded call will come to your phone directing you to call back immediately, or press “1” to avoid prosecution. DON’T CALL BACK - DON’T PRESS “1”. No official administrative center will ever contact you through a text, use high-pressure tactics, be disrespectful, or require you to pay any money through gift cards or using Bitcoins. No government agency will ever ask for payment in Bitcoin, but scammers will. If you hear the word Bitcoin, hang up the phone. 

Another scam involves the fraudster pretending to be an investigator with a financial institution and seeks the victim's help with an investigation. The victim will be directed to purchase gift cards or transfer money from their account. No financial institution will request a member of the public to perform such activities.

The Hamilton Police Service reminds the public the best way to fight fraud is to be aware and not become a victim. If you are unsure about a situation, stop and take a moment. Fraudsters use pressure as a tactic. Look at the situation and ask yourself if this is something that would really happen. Listen to those around you, including store employees, who may try to stop you. If they think you are falling victim to fraud, you probably are a victim.

If you have information about a fraud investigation contact the Hamilton Police Service at (905)546-4925 or email the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre @ www.antifraudcentre.ca or call 1-888-495-8501.