Dryden OPP warn of scam offering government financial assistance

·1 min read

DRYDEN, ONT., — Members of the Dryden Ontario Provincial Police are asking people to verify who they are dealing with before sending any money or sharing personal information over the internet or by phone.

Recently, police say victims have reported to Dryden police that fraudsters have claimed to offer government financial assistance who request their personal information in order to receive benefit payment, according to a police news release issued on Wednesday, Jan. 27.

Fraudsters will ask for bank statements and passwords, and personal identification, police say. Further, the scammers will request money be sent to a Facebook account in the form of a pre-paid cards, gift cards or a photograph of a personal credit card.

Individuals should never respond to these fraudulent communications, police say.

Some warning signs police offer to the public include when dealing with a potential scam include:

• Urgency-- The fraudsters always makes the request sound very urgent, which may cause the victim to not verify the story.

• Request for Money Transfer-- Money is usually requested to be sent by a money transfer company such as Money Gram, Western Union or even through your own bank institution.

• The request of payment using gift cards--The caller will tell the victim to purchase various types of gift cards (iTunes, Google Play, Steam, Walmart) and then text them pictures of the card numbers

If you or someone you know suspect that they've been a victim of a scam, contact your local police service.

Karen Edwards, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Thunder Bay Source