Police are warning the public after an Oceanside resident fell victim to a scammer posing as RCMP.
The resident initially received a call by someone pretending to be a Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) agent and was told their social insurance number was compromised and being used in money laundering through real estate transactions, according to an Oceanside RCMP media release.
This resident became suspicious when the agent advised them to withdraw several thousand dollars and deposit it into Bitcoin ATMs. They told the caller they planned to contact local police to determine if the call was fraudulent, according to the release.
A short time later the resident got a call which displayed the Oceanside RCMP number. The caller claimed to be a police officer and told the resident the earlier call was legitimate.
“Unfortunately, the resident fell victim to this fraud and made the Bitcoin deposit,” the release reads.
Fraudsters can “spoof” a telephone number to make someone believe they are speaking with a legitimate government agent, according to RCMP. Police will never, under any circumstance, instruct anyone to make a Bitcoin deposit.
“If you receive a telephone call from anyone identifying themselves from a government agency such as the CRA or RCMP requesting money or any personal or financial details, hang up the phone, it’s a fraud,” said Sgt. Shane Worth of the Oceanside RCMP. “The CRA or RCMP will never ask for money over the phone.”
For more information on scams and frauds visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website or call 1-888-495-8501.