RCMP are reminding the public to be cautious about online acquaintances.
On July 7, 2022, RCMP report they received a complaint from a Kelowna man who developed what he believed to be a friendship on-line with someone who portrayed themselves as female.
The female initially told the gentleman she was in Ontario, and then in a foreign country. The female asked to borrow money to cover debts and unexpected expenses.
The Kelowna man sent a significant amount of money to assist the woman.
The victim then requested to be repaid, and offered the woman to come to Canada. The woman refused and ended the relationship without returning the ‘borrowed’ money.
How does a person avoid being victimized in this way, and what signs should they watch out for?
“If the basis of the relationship is sending money to help out a person out of country that you have not met, please use caution,” says Cst. Mike Della-Paolera Kelowna RCMP Media Relations Officer, “This is a common internet scheme making a criminal investigation nearly impossible.”
Some of the warning signs a person can watch out for include;
• Profiles that seem too perfect
• Someone you haven’t met professing their love for you and trying to discourage you from speaking to family or friends about the relationship
• They will get upset or act distressed if money isn’t sent, and they may introduce you to their family to legitimize the relationship.
Protect yourself by not giving out personal information, don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know, don’t invest on platforms you don’t know, protect online accounts, and never send money to someone you haven’t met.
Learn more online at Canadian Anti-Fraud Center: https://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm
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