SUDBURY -- East Algoma Ontario Provincial Police are warning the public that fraudsters are calling people in the area, telling them that their social insurance number has been jeopardized.

"The fraudsters are using caller ID spoofing, which the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre describes as disguising telephone numbers appearing on a caller ID display," the OPP said in a news release Thursday.

"This popular tool allows scammers to disguise their calls, as the call will appear to be coming from local or familiar numbers to trick people into answering the phone and trusting the caller."

Fraudsters use a variety of other scam tactics, as well, police said, designed to create anxiety so victims respond by sending money quickly in order to fix the problem.

"The OPP or any other police service does not contact individuals via email or telephone for the purpose of collecting fines or taxes," police said.

If you or someone you know have become a victim contact OPP at 1-888-310-1122 and the Canadian Anti Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or through their online reporting tool.

Tips on preventing fraud:

- Don't trust your call display. It may say 'Police' or 'ABC,' but in reality, it is actually a scammer. It does not matter what the caller ID says, you cannot trust it.

- If you get a call from someone who says they represent a company or a government agency seeking personal information, hang up and call the phone number on your account statement, in the phone book or on the company or government agency's website to verify the authenticity of the request.

- Never give out personal information such as account numbers, social insurance number, mother's maiden name, passwords or other identifying information in response to unexpected calls.