RCMP warn the Canada Revenue Agency scam is back

What does the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and iTunes have in common?

Nothing! It is simply a scam designed to take your money and it has reared its ugly head again in the Williams Lake area, said Const. Eddy Knak.

“This scam has claimed over a dozen victims in the last two weeks who have lost thousands of dollars under the threat of being arrested or going to jail,” Knak said. “What do you think the CRA, a Federal Government agency would do with those I-Tune cards?”

The scam artist calls the intended victim and purports to be an officer with the CRA or a police officer. In the peace officer scenario, the caller provides a name, detachment, and badge number.

The caller will tell the purported victim that they owe back taxes and the easiest way for them to avoid jail time is to purchase the iTunes cards or Visa gift cards.

As time goes on the CRA scam continues to evolve and use different ploys and tactics to swindle unsuspecting victims.

Knak said the best course of action is to hang up the phone if you receive a call from someone claiming to be an officer with the CRA.

The real Canada Revenue Agency will not call you and any correspondence directed to you will be received by regular or registered mail.

1. The CRA will never ask for personal information through an email or text message or by clicking on a link.

2. The CRA will never request payment by prepaid credit cards or iTunes gift cards, and it does not send emails containing details of a tax refund or Interac e-transfer payments.

3. The CRA advises Canadians to confirm the status of their tax accounts before taking any action that may be the result of pressure from suspicious calls or emails, and to verify the legitimacy of the communication by contacting the CRA directly at 1-800-959-8281 or by checking My Account or My Business Account.

4. For more information about fraud scams involving the CRA, visit Protect yourself against fraud.

5. If you’ve shared personal information, contact Equifax and Trans Union to place fraud alerts on your account.

6. If you’ve shared banking information with the scammers, contact your financial institution to place alerts on your account.

You do not need to call the local RCMP detachment if you only received a scam phone call.

Hanging up the phone is your best course of action.

For more information on this fraud and others click on this link:

http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm or call them at: Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre Toll-free at 1-888-495-8501

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