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UPDATE: Latest phone scam involves Okanagan Library overdue fees

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April 04, 2016 - 11:30 AM


OKANAGAN - The Okanagan Regional Library is warning people to be on alert for the lastest phone scam. This one involves library overdue fees.

Patrons are being called by a someone who identifies themselves as a “collection agency working for the library” to receive payment for fees, according to a warning posted to the library's website.

The library only uses a collection agency when someone owes over $50 in fines and are 90 days overdue, the warning says.

In those cases, the library member will be supplied with a detailed overview of their account which outlines the fees and the various methods of payment. The library's public relations manager Maria O'Brien says user data has not been compromised in the scam. 

"With almost one in three people in our region being active library card members, it is not difficult for a scammer to call people at random in an effort to try to commit fraud with this kind of tactic,” she says. “This is another example of how savvy scam artists are becoming.”

The library does not accept payment over the phone.

If you receive a suspicious call from someone who identifies as a collections agent from the library, you are asked to not provide any personal information and follow up with a local library branch.

—This story was updated at 9:51 a.m., April 5, 2016 to note user data has not been compromised.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Glynn Brothen or call 250-319-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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