RCMP deal with phone fraud complaints

RCMP detachments across Alberta have recently received several complaints of senior citizens being defrauded.

  • Aug. 31, 2010 6:00 a.m.

By Dale Cory

RCMP detachments across Alberta have recently received several complaints of senior citizens being defrauded.

In Airdrie, a group of fraudsters have placed calls to elderly citizens posing as their grandson or granddaughter. The callers proceed to tell their victim they are in jail and need bail money. In multiple cases the elderly victim wires the caller money through Western Union or some other money transferring company.

In Ponoka, the detachment has received one complaint so far and it has very similar circumstances.

“In this particular case here, a grandchild has been involved in an accident involving impaired driving and someone is asking for money in order to assist with this. It’s very similar to the cases coming out of Edmonton,” explained Sgt. Glenn DeMaere. “These people tend to target the grandparents, who are unlikely to know the specifics of where their grandchildren are at. A common theme of all these types of frauds is that they are preying on human frailties.”

RCMP would encourage people with elderly parents to touch base with them and go over some of the safety tips listed here.

“Double-check any information you get. If you receive a call from a lawyer, ask where the children are being held if they are asking for bail money. Know that, if bail money is required, you can actually come to the local detachment, and we’ll look after collecting that money and forwarding a receipt or making arrangements to confirm the circumstances.

“A few minutes on the phone could save you several thousand dollars.”

The RCMP is involved in a National Task Force known as Project Phonebusters that was established to combat telemarketing fraud. A few basic suggestions from Project Phonebusters should help ensure that you do not fall victim to the tactics of fraudulent telemarketers:

• Do not believe that everyone calling with an exciting promotion or investment opportunity is trustworthy, especially if you do not know the caller or their company.

• Do not invest or purchase a product or service without carefully checking out the investment, product, service, and the company.

• Do not be afraid to request further documentation from the caller so you can verify the validity of the company.

• Do not be fooled by the promise of a valuable prize in return for a low cost purchase.

• Do not be pressured to send money to take advantage of a “special offer or deal.”

• Do not be hurried into sending money to claim a prize that is available for only a “few hours”

• Do not disclose information about your finances, bank accounts or credit cards ( not even the credit card expiry date).

• Do not be afraid to hang-up the phone.

For more information or to please contact Project Phonebusters at 1-888-495-8501 or visit their website at: www.phonebusters.com

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Ice racing at Mulhurst Bay at Pigeon Lake

Results of the ice racing event at Pigeon Lake

Maskwacis RCMP lay charges from home invasion

Four charged in alleged invasion using knives and gun on Samson Cree Nation - three injured

UPDATE: Highway 2 lanes were closed due to milk truck fire near Millet

A southbound truck hauling milk and cartons collided with a bridge

Ponoka Airport taxiway improvement costs overrun

The $328,000 project increased to $359,000, gravel cited as main reason for the increase

Ponoka County council looks at how it sees collaboration

County wants separate negotiations with Ponoka, Rimbey

WATCH: Ponoka residents enjoy first skate on ice path

A community initiative helped create a skate path for families in Ponoka.

Suspected Toronto serial killer targeting gay community arrested

A 66-year-old man is charged with first-degree murder in disappearance of two Toronto men

Barenaked Ladies, Steven Page, to be inducted into Canadian Music Hall of Fame

Canadian band to get top honours at 2018 JUNO Awards

B.C. out of the running for Amazon’s next headquarters

Toronto is the only Canadian city left in the running despite the province backing Metro Vancouver’s bid for new Amazon headquarters

Post interest rate hike debt tips

What to do about your debt and mortgages after the interest rate hike

Foreign workers sleeping in Alberta Burger King basement

Alberta Health Services said its inspectors found foreign workers sleeping in the basement of the Lethbridge restaurant

Court application halts release of bread price-fixing documents

Bread price-fixing documents won’t be unsealed Thursday, Loblaw says

Pharrell and N.E.R.D to headline NBA All-Star halftime show

11-time Grammy winner Pharrell and his hip hop-rock band N.E.R.D. will headline the halftime show at the 2018 NBA All-Star game in Los Angeles

Heritage Minister wants zero tolerance for harassment in entertainment industry

Heritage Minister Melanie Joly had two meetings to discuss harassment in the film, TV and theatre worlds

Most Read