A woman in the Kootenays is out nearly $7,000 thanks to a bogus tech support scam.
RCMP said in a news release they were called on Jan. 20 by a 47-year-old Trail, B.C. woman about a “sophisticated telephone fraud.”
Police say the woman was dealing with technical difficulty accessing her online account and used an internet search to look up a phone number. She did not realize that the phone number was on a fake website designed to mimic the legitimate company’s website.
The imposter directed the woman to download two two software applications before arranging a video call with her. The scammers convinced the woman to send them two electronic money transfers, electronic gift cards and digital currency worth nearly $7,000.
RCMP say the funds are “not recoverable” and advised the woman to report the incident to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre after resetting her phone.
“Most legitimate companies will not ask for personal details over the phone and not ask for funds to be transferred to them in the form of electronic money transfers, gift cards, or digital currency,” said Sgt. Mike Wicentowich.
“Some fraudsters set up copycat websites in order to trick people into calling them. Check the website address in your internet browser to make sure it is the correct one and use a recognized security software provider to help you detected fraudulent website. Report suspicious occurrences to your local police if you become aware that you have been defrauded.”