Scams an Ongoing issue - Telephone scammers targeting immigrants and new Canadians! Don't trust your caller ID display. Scammers posing as Immigration officers
There are a number of ongoing scams across Canada that target newcomers. Below are some recent articles that detail one of the scams.
Please share the information with newcomers so they are aware of what can happen and be prepared to deal with the scammers.
Although the articles below are from Ontario, similar scams are ongoing throughout the country.
Newcomers need to know that (IRCC) Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada WILL NEVER ask for ANY of the following:
- iTunes cards
- Steam (gaming) cards
- Prepaid credit card & gift cards
- Any kind of money transfer including Western Union and Money gram
Report any suspicious telephone calls, text or emails to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre:
Toll Free: 1-888-495-8501
Hours of operation
Monday-Friday 9:00 am - 4:45 pm Eastern Time
Online - CAFC Fraud Reporting System:
Fraud can now be reported to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) through a new, easy to use, Fraud Reporting System (FRS).
You can log into the tool using either:
GC Key (User ID/Password)
Sign-In Partners (Banking Credentials)
A GCKey account or a Sign-In Partners login uses unique electronic credentials that allow you to communicate securely with the Government of Canada.
This new login is a federal government mandate and all Government of Canada on-line services are to be delivered through the GCKey or Sign-In Partners, providing increased levels of privacy and security for users. By offering a choice of credentials, the Government of Canada is making its online services more convenient and easier to use. Many individuals already use their online banking credentials regularly and being able to use these same credentials to access Government of Canada services online will simply mean one less User ID and password to remember.
Please note: The Fraud Reporting System has a timeout feature that will log you out if there is no activity within 20 consecutive minutes. Prior to the timing out, the application will pop-up a message asking you to reset your session. If you timed out, you will be logged out of the application. No data will be lost but you will not be able to log back into the application to complete your complaint. If you require additional information to be added to your complaint, please contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre for further assistance.
Do not be frightened or embarrassed - people are victims of scams regularly - reporting can help the police to find and stop some of the scammers.
Immigration officers don't ask for bitcoin, iTunes cards or money, police warn (CBC; April 10, 2018)
An immigration scam is targeting newcomers with threats and demands for money in southwestern Ontario
CBC News · Posted: Apr 10, 2018
Newcomers living in southwestern Ontario are being warned about a scam in which the caller demands everything from digital currency to prepaid gift cards, all while threatening an arrest or deportation.
London police say they've learned callers are claiming to be an employee of Immigration Canada, convincing victims to share personal and financial information.
Meet the guy who trolls phone scammers until they ask him to stop calling
"For the most part, these individuals are trying to defraud people of their money. And we're seeing a number of people fall victim to this," Const. Sandasha Bough said.
Victims have told police the caller can become aggressive in their efforts to convince the person to comply.
Adding to the trickery, software is being used to alter call display numbers to match that of Immigration Canada or other services providers.
"This is a reminder to never provide personal information to somebody you don't know," Bough said.
Immigration Canada will never request the following:
· iTunes cards.
· Steam (gaming) cards.
· Prepaid credit card & gift cards.
· Any kind of money transfer including Western Union and Money gram.
London police issue warning about immigration scam (980 CFPL; April 10, 2018)
By 980 CFPL Staff
London police are warning the public to be vigilant against an ongoing scam in the London region and throughout southwestern Ontario.
The scam targets immigrants in the country via a telephone call where the scammer pretends to work for Immigration Canada. During the call from the fake employee, they attempt to make the recipient believe they are the subject of an immigration investigation.
The threat of arrest and/or deportation is used to persuade the person to provide personal and financial information. In some cases, the caller becomes aggressive in order to get the individual to comply with their demands.
“There are currently a number of scams and frauds being used by criminals but the end goal is to defraud you of your money,” said London police Const. Sandasha Bough. “It’s common practice for criminals to spoof real law enforcement numbers on call display using apps or other software.
Bough adds it’s the Canada Border Services Agency that’s responsible for immigration enforcement in Canada.
In the scam, people are asked to provide Bitcoin, iTunes cards, gaming cards, prepaid credit and gift cards, Western Union money transfers, money grams and e-transfer/wire transfers, things the Canada Border Services Agency would never do.
Police say Londoners should report any suspicious telephone calls, text or emails to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre or to the London Police Service Fraud Telephone Intake line (519-661-5515, extension 5257).
Police Issue Warning About Immigration Scam (Blackburn News; April 10, 2018)
BY MIRANDA CHANT APRIL 10, 2018 10:33AM
London police are reminding residents not to provide personal or financial information over the phone to people claiming to be from Immigration Canada.
As part of an on-going immigration scam, an individual claiming to be an employee of Immigration Canada has been calling people across southwestern Ontario, including London. The fraudster threatens the person with arrest or deportation to get them to provide personal or financial information.
In some cases, the phoney employee has become aggressive to get the victim to comply with their demands, according to police.
Police are urging Londoners to never provide personal or financial information to anyone unless they are certain of that person’s identity. Fraudsters frequently spoof real law enforcement phone numbers using call display apps.
Police also advise that the Canada Border Service Agency, which is responsible for immigration enforcement, will never demand Bitcoins, iTunes cards, gaming cards, prepaid credit cards or gift cards, money gram or e-transfer or wire transfer to avoid arrest or deportation.
Anyone who has received a suspicious call, text, or email is asked to report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca or to the London Police Service Fraud Telephone Intake line at 519-661-5515 ext. 5257.
Fake Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) scams in Saskatoon:
For more information about recent phone scams: