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Kingston Police investigating $30K Canada Border Agency Scam call

Photo by Aleksi Raisa.

Kingston Police have stated that they continue to receive several reports of individuals being contacted by fraudsters, who claim to be employees from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and demanding money.

The victim in this latest incident called the police on Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021, and reported that she had just been defrauded of $30,000, according to a release from Kingston Police.

Police provided the following details on how the scam played out:

The victim received a phone call from an individual who allegedly worked for the CBSA. This individual stated her account was being seized as a result of drugs, fake identifications and fraudulent accounts being opened in her name. She was then advised that the investigation was ongoing and local police would be following up with her at a later date.

The fraudster continued correspondence with the victim by email, portraying themselves as a Border agent, and provided instructions on how to use their “safeguard machines.” The victim was also advised to avoid informing the bank tellers of the reason for the large withdrawal, so as not to interfere with the investigation.

The victim followed all of the instructions that she was provided and transferred the entirety of her savings. It was determined, after the transfers were complete, that the “safeguard machines” the suspects were referring to were in fact Bitcoin machines.  

The victim then received a call from an officer identifying themselves as Sgt. Marshall with the Kingston Police and the caller ID appeared as Kingston Police with the correct telephone number. This technique of masking or replicating phone numbers is called “spoofing.”

The victim became suspicious after Sgt. Marshall reprimanded her for asking legitimate questions and accused her of not cooperating with their serious investigation. She then contacted the Kingston Police herself and it was at this time she realized that she had been a victim of a telephone scam.

Kingston Police said that at this time there are no suspects in this incident and are reminding the community that at no time will the Kingston Police, Canada Border Services, or any Financial Institution call you and ask you for personal information or to send money via a Cryptocurrency.

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