Tax season brings rise in CRA phone scams

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KAMLOOPS - Local RCMP say they are getting up to 15 reports a day of scammers who say they are employees of Canada Revenue Agency.

The phone calls, according to an RCMP media release, can be harassing or threatening and often the scammers accuse the victim of committing tax fraud.

"They will say that there is a warrant for their arrest and unless money is wired to them or prepaid credit card codes are supplied, the police will be coming to arrest them,” Cpl. Jodi Shelkie says in the release.

Shelkie says citizens should be aware the Canada Revenue Agency will never ask for any kind of payment to be wired to them or for prepaid credit cards and recommends hanging up on these callers immediately.

Scammers are also posing as Canada Revenue Agency employees and advising citizens they have a tax refund before asking for personal information. 

“This information can then be used in identity theft situations,” Shelkie says.“It is important to tell family members who may not have heard about this scam. Have a conversation with people who may not have access to the internet. The more people (who) know about this scam, the better.”

If you suspect that you have been contacted by a scammer, note the number on call display and contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Center, toll free at 1-888-495-8501 or online at fraud reporting website.

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