Watch out for cheque scam

Terrace RCMP has had two similar fraud incidents that the public needs to be aware of so that they don’t fall victim to these scammers.

  • Nov. 18, 2015 5:00 a.m.

Terrace RCMP has had two similar fraud incidents that the public needs to be aware of so that they don’t fall victim to these scammers.

This scam is commonly referred to as the Money Transfer Request, a spin off the classic Nigerian scam.

The scammer makes initial contact thru a social media site like LinkedIn, offering a job to work as a collections person of sorts for their out-of-country company. Part of the agreement is that the person will be sent cheques from companies in North America owing money to the out of country company. The person would then cash these cheques, take a percentage of the payment, and then wire transfer the remainder to the company.

These cheques are all actually from legitimate companies which appear to have been stolen out of the mail and the only part that has been altered is the payee name. The amount, signatures, and other info are still the same.

The cheque clears and the crime is not noticed till much later. One the money is wire transferred, it is very difficult to reverse and if it is sent overseas then the likelihood of recovery is close to nil.

“The old adage of ‘If something seems too good to be true, it probably is’ is good advice to live by. If you are not sure about a situation, call your police before proceeding. Preventing a crime from happening in the first place is our number one goal,” says Const. Angela Rabut, community policing/media relations Terrace RCMP.

Tips on How to Protect Yourself:

Remember

If you have been approached by someone asking you to transfer money for them, it is probably a scam.

Caution

Never send money, or give credit card or online account details to anyone you do not know and trust.

Think

Don’t accept a cheque or money order for payment for goods that is more than what you agreed upon. Send it back and ask the buyer to send you payment for the agreed amount before you deliver the goods or services.

Investigate

Examine the information on the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website for information on how to protect yourself against money transfer scams.

Ask yourself

Is it really safe to transfer money for someone I do not know?

Go to Canada’s Anti-Fraud Site for more information on frauds and scams to protect yourself.

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