Scammers After Your Personal Info and Cash Using Social Media, Emails and Texts
Photograph by David Rangel
The RCMP is warning the public that there are a large number of COVID-19 scams that are circulating on social media, and being sent via email and text messages
The Nanaimo RCMP says it receives a number of calls each day from people who report that scammers have been in touch.
Constable Gary O’Brien says very few of the callers were actually duped into providing personal information and were advised to report the scam to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
The fraud centre reports a dramatic increase in scams related to the pandemic.
Among them are companies offering fake COVID-19 tests and selling unproven drugs to treat symptoms.
Another scam is from someone claiming to be with the Public Health Agency of Canada and asking for personal information and credit card numbers.
A popular scam circulating is the claim that duct cleaning can protect people from COVID-19.
During March and April, the Anti-Fraud Centre says 766 people reported scammers trying to take advantage of the pandemic.
Unfortunately, 188 people reported they were duped by the scammers.
The money lost to COVID-19 scammers during those two months is 1.2-Millions dollars.
There are a number of ways to protect yourself, such as not giving out personal information to callers over the phone or on the internet and doing the research before buying or investing. You also warned don’t click on links in emails or pop-up windows.