THE New Westminster Police Department is warning the public that the Canada Revenue Agency scam is hitting New Westminster with a renewed intensity.
“We have received a wave of calls from residents advising us that people claiming to work for the CRA are calling to collect fictitious debts,” said Sgt. Jeff Scott. “The taxpayer is often threatened with court charges, jail or even deportation.”
Just this week, a New Westminster resident was nearly defrauded out of $3,000. They were asked to purchase iTunes cards and provide the purchased iTunes card numbers to the fraudsters. Thankfully this resident suspected the scam and came to police, but only after they were called from a number which displayed as the same phone number of the New Westminster Police non-emergency line.
The New Westminster Police Department said it would like to stress that police do not deal with tax issues.
New Westminster residents should be wary of any CRA phone calls with an Ontario phone number. The CRA advises Canadians to confirm the status of their tax accounts before taking any action that may be the result of pressure from suspicious calls or emails, and to verify the legitimacy of the communication by contacting the CRA directly at 1-800-959-8281.
The best course of action to take to prevent others from falling victim to the CRA scam is to talk to elderly friends and family about the scam and how it works.
Call New Westminster Police if you have been victimized by the scam. If you would like to learn more about the Canada Revenue Agency scam you can visit their website: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/scrty/frdprvntn/menu-eng.html