Police in Kirkland Lake warn of surge in phone scams involving pre-paid gift cards
Members of the Kirkland Lake Ontario Provincial Police are warning the public they have received multiple reports of people becoming victims of fraud with the use of pre-paid gift cards. (File)
SUDBURY -- Members of the Kirkland Lake Ontario Provincial Police are warning the public they have received multiple reports of people becoming victims of fraud with the use of pre-paid gift cards.
"Scammers will use many different tricks in order to get your money and will exhaust all avenues," police said in a news release Thursday. "They pursue vulnerable people until they get as much money from them as possible."
Some examples of frauds that are being reported are:
- CRA: Claiming you owe money to the government.
- Banking: Claiming that there is fraudulent activity on your credit card, or you have an outstanding balance.
- Extortion: Telling you to pay them or else they will put personal information or photos out on the internet.
- Prize: To claim your prize you need to pay a small fee.
- Emergency: Claiming that a family member is in trouble or being held in jail. Request payment to help them.
"If you are asked to pay for any service or product with a pre-paid gift card, don't do it," police said. "It's a scam! Financial institutions will never request the transfer of funds to an external account or the purchase of gift cards."
The Kirkland Lake OPP has informed stores in the area that sell pre-paid gift cards and provided them with a handout to give to customers who they feel may be a victim of fraud.
"The handout outlines some common frauds and asks that the customer calls the Kirkland Lake OPP detachment to speak to an officer about the reason for the purchase," police said. "Our goal is to educate and prevent the customer of being defrauded of their money."
For more information on fraud trends, click here.