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Scammers targeting immigrants for iTunes cards

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July 14, 2016 - 2:34 PM

THOMPSON-OKANAGAN - Immigrants to Canada are the newest target for scammers.

Imitation Immigration Officers are calling or emailing people and demanding payment in iTunes gift cards, according to a Kamloops RCMP press release. People receiving the calls are threatened with deportation if they don’t cough up payment.

The RCMP relate this crime to the usual Canada Revenue Agency scams reported in the past.

Police are warning people not to pay for any service or product with an iTunes gift card, and are reminding people Immigration Officers don’t have the power to deport people without specific procedures. They ask that scammers be reported to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

Meanwhile, Vernon RCMP are reporting a similar scam. Const. Jocelyn Noseworthy says several local people have been contacted lately and told they owe thousands of dollars to the Canada Revenue Agency. They are threatened with jail time and instructed to buy iTunes cards and provide the caller with the codes.  

"You cannot pay your taxes in iTunes cards," Noseworthy says. "If you are contacted by someone claiming to be with Canada Revenue Agency, hang up, and contact CRA yourself directly. Never give anyone money or cards in a situation like this. It is a scam."

If you received a scam phone call but did not become victimized, simply hang up your phone. You do not need to contact your local police department, Noseworthy says. 

For more information about this and other frauds, click here or call 1-888-495-8501.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brendan Kergin or call 250-819-6089 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.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above. 

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