In recent months, scam artists have escalated their attacks on everyday citizens by claiming to be from the Canada Revenue Agency.
These scams usually comprise of someone being contacted by email, phone, text message, or mail claiming to be an agent of the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). The criminal will claim that you owe money to the CRA and if you do not pay this money, you will go to prison or jail. They will then request that you send funds to them. The fake agents will state that they will accept bitcoin, gift cards, or any other alternative form of currency for payment.
If you find yourself in this situation, stop speaking with them immediately and call the Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or report them online at www.antifraudcentre.ca.
These scams, which have now been widely reported in the media, have resulted in many Canadians losing hundreds of millions of dollars. Law enforcement has been cracking down on illegal call centers who use the guise of the CRA to steal from Canadians every year. Late last year, police in India arrested 32 CRA imposters who had drained Canadians of their hard-earned money.
While the authorities have made great efforts to curb this illegal activity, Canadians need to be aware of the methods of fraud in order to protect themselves. We must be on the lookout for email phishing, fake-callers, and other methods of theft.
The best way to defend against fraud is to arm yourself with knowledge. These attacks can be thwarted by knowing the following:
The Canada Revenue Agency will not demand immediate payment by Interac e-transfer, bitcoin, prepaid credit cards or gift cards from retailers such as iTunes, Amazon, or others.
The Canada Revenue Agency will not use aggressive language and threaten to send you to the police or jail.
The Canada Revenue Agency will not ask for information about your passport, health card, or driver’s license.
The Canada Revenue Agency will not leave voicemails that are threatening or give personal or financial information.
The Canada Revenue Agency will not email you a link asking you to fill in an online form with personal or financial details.
The CRA is an important institution working hard to maintain the integrity of our taxation system.
If you are unsure of the legitimacy of a call, email and other forms of contact with the CRA, you can reach out to someone you trust, go into a local bank or government office, or feel free to contact your M.P.
Together we can help make sure that we and those close to us don’t become victims.
You can find more information on how to defend yourself against fraud at the website below;
Thanks to the diligent and relentless efforts of the RCMP and other law enforcement agencies, scams are being minimized.
By being vigilant, you can protect yourself and your loved ones from being victimized.