CRA Scam continues to target area residents

March is “Fraud Prevention Month” and the Orangeville Police Service reminds the community to be vigilant of the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) scam as it is still targeting area residents. Police receive calls from people on a daily basis, reporting that they have received a phone call from a CRA Scam fraudster.

Police continue to advise residents to not enter into any transactions with these criminals and to contact the Canadian Revenue Agency themselves if they are not sure about money they owe to the CRA.

In some cases those people targeted have reported that their telephone call display reads “Police”, “CRA”, or “Government”, with a phone number. With today’s technology the fraudsters do have the tools to make their scam look extremely believable and they are well versed in convincing people that they are legitimate.

The scammers advise that they are agents of the CRA and that they are calling to address outstanding debts owed to the CRA. The targeted members of the public are told to pay the outstanding amount immediately or they will be arrested and taken into custody until the debt is paid. Further instructions are then given for the target to purchase gift cards from large retail stores or online retailers. Cryptocurrency (Bitcoin) has also been requested in these frauds.

“People need to think about what’s being asked of them and keep in mind that the CRA doesn’t operate in this manner”, said Constable Scott Davis, Public and Media Relations Officer.
“The best way to deal with this type of call is to end it as quickly as possible by simply hanging up on them. They may call back but when they realize that you are not falling for their scam they will move on”.

In addition to educating residents about how to avoid these scams, police are also calling on the retail business community to vigilant for potential victims. “We are asking the retail business community to help educate the public by posting a message at check-out areas and encouraging staff members to engage customers who attempt to purchase large quantities of gift cards”, added Constable Davis.

Police encourage the public to report such incidents when they occur.

Posted on March 9, 2018