Scam imitates BC Hydro to scare business owners into paying money

RCMP sent out a bulletin recently warning of a new scam targeting businesses to watch out for.

RCMP sent out a bulletin recently warning of a new scam targeting businesses to watch out for.

“Victims report they receive a phone call from a fraudster claiming to work with BC Hydro. The caller advises the business owner they owe a large sum of money and unless paid immediately their power will be cut off. The victim is directed to purchase a PayPower Visa Reload Pack from a retail store. With the PayPower card loaded, the victim gives the caller a 10 digit code off the back of the card, allowing the fraudster access to the funds,” describes the RCMP bulletin.

The bulletin goes on to mention that a business in North Vancouver fell victim to the scam.

“If it’s happening there, it’s happening here. People just might not be reporting it,” says Constable Jim Preston of the Lake Cowichan RCMP Detachment.

Const. Preston advises residents to keep their wits about them if they receive such a call. Listen to the caller, take down their name and information, and don’t be alarmed by the threat of money owing. Do not agree to purchase anything or to make any payments until you have contacted BC Hydro via the number that is on your bill statement.

“Your bill will have your account information and what you’ve paid, so if you ever have any doubt, just get their information and then call yourself through your bill, and verify,” says Const. Preston. “If somebody has actually lost money or be defrauded, they can always report it to us.”

If you have’t lost money but receive a suspicious call, you can also contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-348-5358.

The RCMP offer these scam prevention tips:

• Scammers are counting on the fact that you will want to act quickly to prevent losing your power.

• Never send money to anyone you do not know and trust. Verify the person’s identity before you take any action.

• Don’t give out any personal information to an unknown caller.

 

Just Posted

RCMP looking for missing Duncan teen

Dallas Macleod, 18, was last seen on Aug. 10

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Vancouver Island woman to attempt historic swim across Juan de Fuca Strait today

Ultra-marathon swimmer Susan Simmons to attempt to swim from Victoria to Port Angeles and back

Robert Barron column: Some motorcyclists a danger to themselves; and others

I would often bellyache over the mandatory helmet laws in Canada.

Celebrated sax-man P. J. Perry comes to Crofton Aug. 19

Enjoy the sounds of Canada’s king of bebop at Osborne Bay Pub

‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Hundreds of officials marched in the parade, which included massed band, several police motorcycles

‘Hard on water:’ Smoke not the only long-range effect of wildfires

The project began more than 10 years ago after southern Alberta’s 2003 Lost Creek fire

B.C. VIEWS: Genuine aboriginal rights can be misused and discredited

Camp Cloud one of long line of protests falsely asserting title

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to march in Montreal’s Pride parade

Trudeau will end the day in his home riding of Papineau

Vancouver Whitecaps give up late goal in 2-2 draw with New York Red Bulls

Four of Vancouver’s next five games are at home

Evacuation order issued in Island village due to “risk of falling debris”

Fire continues to threaten town’s only access road

B.C. man designer behind Canucks’ retro jersey

Jeremie White was 20 years old when he told Canucks assistant GM Brian Burke he had a design

Most Read