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Scammer posing as fraud investigator dupes local person

A scam in which the victim is duped into helping solve a fictitious crime has taken advantage of at least one local resident's better nature.
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A scam in which the victim is duped into helping solve a fictitious crime has taken advantage of at least one local resident's better nature.

Prince George RCMP said Tuesday a scammer claiming to work as a fraud investigator for a major Canadian bank convinced the person over the phone to help him and the RCMP with a purported investigation by making a money transfer.

The victim was defrauded of thousands of dollars.

"Investigators would like to remind the public that the RCMP would never use the public to assist with an investigation of this nature," the detachment said. "Although financial institutions do have security personnel that investigate frauds, they would never request a client to assist, especially by transferring their own money."

RCMP offered the following advice to those who receive a suspicious call:

- Hang-up and contact the financial institution or government agency the person claimed to be working for. Numbers can be found on the back of your debit or credit card, or through their official website;

- Obtain the caller's contact information and search it on the internet. Often the contact information will be associated to frauds and is a clear warning it is not a legitimate enquiry;

- Never give your personal information to anyone who calls you over the phone. This is especially the case when an organization such as the financial institution you deal with calls and should have all your necessary information already;

- Never agree to wire funds or purchase cash cards.

"Wiring money is untraceable and irreversible," RCMP said. "Similarly, purchasing cash cards and providing the scammers with the card number and security number would be very difficult to trace."

If you are a victim, immediately report the fraud to your local RCMP or police department of jurisdiction. If you are not victimized, contact the Canadian Anti-fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca.

For more information on common frauds in Canada, go to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website at www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca..