Scammers are masking their phone numbers to appear as if the call is coming from the Delta Police Department.
Police are warning to be vigilant after after a Delta resident was conned out of $3,000 by a fraudster posing as a Delta police officer.
According to a DPD press release, a man called and told the resident that her father was in custody and that she should purchase $3,000 in Google Play gift cards to be used as payment for “bail money.” The call appeared to be coming from 604-946-4411, the phone number for DPD headquarters.
The resident purchased the gift cards and sent the activation codes to the man via WhatsApp, an internet messaging service owned by Facebook.
“Unfortunately scammers will spoof well known phone numbers, like that of local police, in order to try and convince their potential victims to take them seriously,” DPD public affairs coordinator Cris Leykauf said in the press release. “We want to advise the public that Canadian police officers will not call you directly asking for money for bail or any other purposes.”
Leykauf noted there are many variations on these scams, and fraudsters regularly change their tactics.
“Our best advice is that if someone is calling you asking you to pay a fine, taxes, bail, or anything through gift cards or bitcoin, it is a scam. Hang up.”