Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Red Deerians tax scam victims out thousands of dollars each

In the last few days Red Deer RCMP has received 30 tax scam reports

Several Red Deer victims are out thousands of dollars thanks to the latest Canada Revenue Agency tax scam.

In the past few days, Red Deer RCMP have received more than 30 reports of tax scams, including from a handful of victims who have lost between $1,500 and $4,700 each.

Several recent files show the scammers calling back after successfully victimizing Red Deerians once, telling them they owed even more money.

One Red Deer complainant reported that their phone display showed the Red Deer RCMP complaint line number, and that the scammer claimed to have a warrant from the Alberta RCMP for their arrest.

Victims were persuaded by aggressive callers to pay “overdue” taxes with gift cards, Steam cards (an online game), prepaid credit cards or bitcoin currency.

“Red Deer RCMP urge people to ask questions, be skeptical of phone calls from anyone who is demanding money, and to educate themselves about these very common scams,” says Cpl. Karyn Kay of the Red Deer RCMP. “Check your facts and do your research, and be alert to red flags such as anyone demanding payment through gift cards or pre-paid credit cards. Then, when you get a call from a scammer, hang up and ignore them.”

Police said the scam has many variations from pre-recorded messages, numerous calls with threats of arrests or deportation in an ongoing attempt to pressure victims into sending money.

Police said no matter which approach scammers take, key facts are always the same:

· Even if you do owe money to Canada Revenue Agency, they do not accept payment in gift cards or bitcoin. No legitimate agency does.

· Any legitimate caller will encourage you to call back independently to verify their claim. Do not call back to a number the caller gives you. Look up CRA or the appropriate agency and call them yourself.

· If police call you on police business, they will give you verifiable facts including a file number and their name and rank. If you get a threatening phone call claiming to represent police and asking for money, ask for those verifiable facts, hang up and call your local police detachment to check.

· Remember that scammers frequently use “number spoofing” to make it look like their call is coming from a legitimate organization.

If you receive a call from a tax scammer, you do not need to report it to police unless you have fallen victim to their scam. Police said because these scammers are located outside of Canada, it is impossible to locate them. They advise residents to hang up the phone.

Just Posted

Graffiti vandals hit West Park

Church, seniors home and parked cars among targets of vandals early on Sunday

Twitter rolls out stricter rules on abusive content

NEW YORK — Twitter is now enforcing stricter policies on violent and… Continue reading

India’s ruling party loses seats but still wins in Gujarat

NEW DELHI — The ruling party of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi… Continue reading

Silent Santa lets kids with autism meet Santa without distractions

EDMONTON — When Santa greeted seven-year-old Kalen Boodhoo during a special photo… Continue reading

Replay Red Deer Dec. 17

Watch news highlights in video from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Grizzly bear trophy hunting over in B.C.

NDP government says 2017 hunt was the last one

Alberta politician Derek Fildebrandt convicted, fined in hit and run

An Edmonton traffic court has found an Alberta legislature member guilty in… Continue reading

Family suspends search for missing Alberta couple, plane near Revelstoke

Due to bad weather, families of missing Albertan couple say they will resume in the spring

Replay Red Deer Dec. 17

Watch news highlights in video from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Owl found dead after eating rat poison leaves B.C. woman concerned

After finding the owl on her Surrey property, Christine Trozzo says the poison is a concern for kids

Dying man’s wish to see new ‘Star Wars’ movie coming true

A dying man’s wish to see the new “Star Wars” movie is… Continue reading

Bountiful polygamist believed he couldn’t be prosecuted: lawyer

Winston Blackmore’s lawyer says Blackmore did not believe he could be prosecuted

Trudeaus, Mulroneys, Erdem? Canadians who could snag a royal wedding invite

Save the date. Kensington Palace announced Friday that Prince Harry and Meghan… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month