Immigration phone scams are back in the news, with crooks in Nova Scotia making phone calls and demanding money.
Immigration Phone Scams
Criminals posing as immigration officials is unfortunately nothing new. This story from out east serves as a warning to be on guard:
Police say they received a report on Tuesday evening from a 23-year-old man who said he received a call from someone claiming to be with Immigration Canada. The man was told a complaint had been filed against him and would have to pay hundreds of dollars for legal representation. He was asked to forward funds through a money transfer.
The man told police he then received a follow-up call later from someone claiming to be a police officer and was advised to send the money referenced in the first phone call or he would be arrested. Police say in a release the phone number on the man’s call display was a general inquiries number for Halifax Regional Police (HRP) – the number is believed to have been generated by a computer program.
According to police, the man followed through with the requests, having believed the calls to be legitimate, and was defrauded of thousands of dollars.
If you receive a phone call from someone posing as an immigration official, remember:
- Immigration officials will never ask for money over the phone. If you receive a call from an immigration official who is asking for cash, hang up the phone.
- Do not give the caller any of your personal information, such as home address, credit card information, social insurance number, or date of birth. Often, scammers can use this information for identity theft.
The article quotes police as saying that you do not have to contact them if you’ve simply received a call and hung up. But if you have been scammed out of some money, contact the police.