COVID-19 scammers add insult to injury
2020-03-24 08:58 PDT
Scam artists are playing on fears surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, and North Vancouver RCMP are not happy about it.
"We’re warning the North Vancouver community about a series of COVID-19 related scams that are popping up nation-wide," said Sgt. Peter DeVries of the North Vancouver RCMP. "Thankfully we haven't received any reports of people losing money," he said. "We want to keep it that way."
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre is seeing an uptick in fake emails, texts and social media posts that try to trick victims into sending money or revealing personal information. Fraudsters may ask you to donate to victims, offer advice on unproven treatments, protective gear, virus detection kits, or fake home sanitizing services, or may direct you to bogus websites selling non-existent products.
Click here for higher resolution image
"Our phones have been lighting up too, sometimes 3, 4, 5 times a day with phishing emails and bogus text messages," said Sgt. DeVries. "The community has enough to deal with at the moment. Don't let these fraudsters add insult to injury."
What are the most common scams right now?
- Text messages offering free face masks from the Red Cross, with a fake link that prompts the person to make a payment as a
delivery feefor masks they will never receive
- Emails from fraudsters pretending to be the WHO or the Public Health Agency of Canada, prompting the recipient to give personal information to obtain updates on the organization's response to COVID-19
- Phone calls from fraudsters pretending to be the WHO or the Public Health Agency of Canada informing you that you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, and asking for a credit card number and health card number
- Door-to-door sales of fake decontamination kits or fake COVID-19 testing kits
These scams offer bogus products and remedies to scared Canadians. In order to prevent being scammed, we encourage you to keep up to date on the latest information from reliable sources such as the BC Centres for Disease Control, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and the World Health Organization.
What to do if you are the victim of a scam
if you have lost money or valuables, or provided your personal information, contact your local police
If you have been contacted but have not lost anything or given your personal information, report online to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
Sgt. Peter DeVriesMedia Relations Officer
North Vancouver RCMP
nvan.rcmp-grc.gc.ca (English only)
147 East 14th St, North Van., BC, V7L 2N4
- Date modified: