Phone scams are targeting Oakville, Burlington, Milton, Halton Hills residents
Published April 22, 2022 at 3:38 pm
Spring has sprung and so have telephone scams in Oakville, Burlington, Milton and Halton Hills.
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CFAC) is warning local residents of numerous scams they have received reports of involving fraudsters claiming to be from cellular, internet or landline service providers.
The fraudsters contact your home in effort to steal your personal information or order cellphones in your name.
Residents are being asked to be aware of these scams and protect themselves.
Some of the more common service scams reported to the CFAC include:
Air duct cleaning
A scammer offers services that include air duct cleaning or furnace/boiler repairs at very low rates. If the company completes the services:
- they are of low quality
- the warranties are invalid
- the repairs can cause potential risks
Cellphone service provider
A fraudster calls and claims to be from a cellphone service provider. They offer a deal that’s too good to be true. The fraudsters proceed to ask for the victim’s personal information including their Social Insurance Number (SIN) and Driver’s License number. They will then:
- Use your personal information for identity fraud
- Order a cellphone using your identity
- Order a cellphone and have it shipped to the victim but then tell you it was the wrong cellphone and you need to ship it back to the criminal’s address
If you get a call from your service provider, tell them that you will call them back and end the call. Look up the legitimate phone number for the company and communicate with them directly by always making the outgoing call.
Help with government documents
For a fee, a website offers services to help you:
- get a passport
- get a birth certificate
- book a driver’s road test
The website may promise faster processing times or other guarantees.
The forms needed to get government identification are free. No one can speed up the process.
Scammers create fake websites and online ads that offer “cheap” immigration services or even may “guarantee” high paying jobs. Many of the websites will look like official government sites.
Beware if they are asking you to pay for application access fees or deposits before the application is even started.
Learn more about immigration scams and fraud.
Low interest rate offers
A scammer offers reduced interest rates on credit cards or line of credit. They request personal information from you, such as your:
- Social Insurance Number (SIN)
- mother’s maiden name
- date of birth
- credit card information
In most instances, the scammers request a one-time fee for the service.
The scammers do not have the ability to lower interest rates. They’re stealing your personal information and/or your money.
For a fee, a website offers services to help you get a pardon or criminal record waiver. The website may promise faster processing times or other guarantees.
The forms required to obtain a pardon are free. No one can speed up the waiver process.
Common resale scams target automobiles, timeshares and rental or property listing. Typically, you’ll get a call after posting something for sale online. The scammer claims to have a buyer and offers their help to sell the item, for a fee. If you pay, you learn there is no buyer and your money is gone.
A scammer claims a virus has infected your computer. The communication might happen through:
- Alarming website pop-ups that demand you call a number urgently
- Unsolicited telephone calls (they may claim to be a Microsoft or other well-known computer company employee)
The scammer states that your computer is sending out viruses or has been hacked and must be serviced. They request access to your computer and may run programs or alter settings.
The scammer asks you to pay a fee for fixing your computer via credit card or money transfer. In some cases, the scammer asks you to log into your bank account to transfer funds.
Scams and cybercrimes can happen to anyone, anywhere, at any time. If you have been a victim of a scam, fraud or cybercrime, contact local police immediately.
It is also recommended that you report the instance of a scam, fraud or cybercrime, whether you are a victim or not, to the CAFC.
The CAFC assists law enforcement through maintaining a central repository of information to assist with investigations. Learn more about the CAFC here.insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising