Columbia Valley residents are at risk after receiving an increased number of calls from a Canada Revenue Agency scam.
Corporal Brent Ayers says police have received around 20 calls from residents in a week, reporting someone claiming to be with the CRA contacted them, demanding personal information and payment for outstanding taxes.
Ayers says some residents even received threat of police action if they did not pay their fines.
“Its tough because they are based usually out of country or with numbers that we just don’t have resources or the ability to track,” Ayers says. “You are dealing with somebody who know enough to sound as if they are fully aware of how things work in Canada, but if you actually press them, usually they fumble.”
Police are advising you not to give out any personal information over the phone.
“Everyone is trying to get their taxes done and its a good time for the fraudsters to also put the pressure on from their end and attempt to extort money from people with fear and intimidation, that they are going to be arrested or threatening them that there will be persecution if they don’t provide them with personal details,” Ayers says.
The CRA typically contacts residents via official government mail if there is an issue with your tax return.
Ayers advises residents to call police or the CRA directly if you have any concerns.
– Columbia Valley RCMP Corporal Brent Ayers
– Jeff Johnson