RCMP on P.E.I. warn of fraudulent missing persons posts on social media
RCMP on Prince Edward Island are warning of fraudulent online posts about missing people.
Const. Gavin Moore says in many cases, fraudsters want these posts to be shared widely.
They then use the posts to begin private conversations with people to try to learn about them and find ways to scam them.
"Fraudsters are constantly trying to learn about their victims," he said.
"They try to engage with people. They have huge numbers of different scripts, stories, schemes that they can try. And the more interaction a fraudster has with an individual, the more opportunity they then have to develop a plan, a script and a story that may work."
He said police take missing person reports very seriously, and recommends if you see something posted online, to check and see if it's been reported by police.
"If you haven't heard about this from another platform — be it through your regular news outlet or through alerts from the police — then that should be a red flag that this is something very significant and this is where you're first learning about it," he said.
Moore said posts like these are common on the Island and asks anyone who sees one not to share it.
"If you share these, then you are then giving these scammers more opportunity to find victims," he said.
"So please do not share any of these messages unless you can confirm it to be accurate."