**** HRP Media Release
Police warn citizens of fraudulent phone calls targeting seniors
Halifax Regional Police is advising the public of a recent increase in fraudulent phone calls targeting seniors in relation to topping up government benefits due to COVID-19.
The scammer poses as a representative from Service Canada calling in relation to topping up Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security payments due to Covid-19. The scammer will ask the victim to provide personal details such as date of birth, address and bank account number.
If you get a call from someone stating they are from Service Canada or another government agency, and they ask for your bank account number, this is a scam. The scammers often use caller ID spoofing—a scam in which fraudsters disguise the number seen on your call display in order to trick you into answering the phone and trusting the caller.
How to protect yourself
- Don’t trust call display. Using apps, scammers can choose any number they want to show on your call display. What appears to be an incoming call from a legitimate agency can be a scammer.
- If you get a call from a person saying they represent a company or government agency and they ask for personal information, don’t provide the information and hang up. Call the number on your account statement or the number listed in the phone book/online to verify that the caller is legitimate.
- Never provide personal information such as your SIN, account numbers, passwords or other identifying information in response to unexpected calls.