Between July 11 and July 13, 2012 Prescott OPP were called in relation to four attempt frauds. Two by mail, one by email and another by phone. It is important to remember that anything that appears to be too good to be true usually is. Always take your time to investigate and ask questions from others not associated with the situation before you act.
Remember these golden rules to help you beat the scammers.
• Always get independent advice if an offer involves money, personal information, time or commitment.
• There are no guaranteed get-rich-quick schemes—sometimes the only people who make money are the scammers.
• Do not agree to offers or deals right away. If you think you have spotted a great opportunity, insist on time to get independent advice before making a decision.
• Do not hand over money or personal information, or sign anything until you have done your homework and checked the credentials of the company that you are dealing with.
• Do not rely on glowing testimonials: find solid evidence of a company's success.
• Log directly on to a website that you are interested in rather than clicking on links provided in an email.
• Never send money, or give credit card or online account details to anyone you do not know and trust.
• If you spot a scam or have been scammed, get help. Contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, the Competition Bureau or your local police for assistance.
Busting these common myths will minimize your chances of being scammed.
• All companies, businesses and organizations are legitimate because they are licensed and monitored by the government: This is not always true. While there are rules about setting up and running a business or a company in Canada, scammers can easily pretend to have approval when they don't. Even businesses that are licensed could still try to scam you by acting dishonestly.
• All Internet websites are legitimate: This is not always true. Websites are quite easy and cheap to set up. The scammers can easily copy a genuine website and trick you into believing it is legitimate.
• There are short cuts to wealth that only a few people know: This is not always true. Ask yourself the question: if someone knew a secret to instant wealth, why would they be telling their secret to others?
• Scams involve large amounts of money: This is not always true. Sometimes scammers target a large number of people and try to get a small amount of money from each person.
• Scams are always about money: This is not always true. Some scams are aimed at stealing personal information from you.