This fraud bulletin was prepared to provide awareness regarding Service Scams and tips on how to avoid becoming a victim.
Service scams may be categorized as any false, deceptive, misleading or fraudulent promotion or solicitation for services. These solicitations involve third parties that commonly make offers for telecommunications, internet, finance, medical and energy services. Additionally, this category may also include offers such as extended warranties, insurance and sales services. Some of the most common scams include the Microsoft/windows repairs, lower interest rates, home renovations (duct cleaning, furnace replacements, air purifiers), immigration scams, pardons, and lower hydro/energy.
A consumer receives a call advising that they have malware and viruses on their computer. However, the issue can be fixed over the phone with remote access. The caller indicates there is an immediate threat to your computer and tries to pressure you into a hasty decision. Once scammers are provided access, they will steal information. They can even access online banking profiles and more.
Lower Interest Rate
Scammers call consumers and offer to lower credit card interest rates for a fee. Consumers are convinced and provide banking details and agree to a one‐time fee. Scammers are not associates from your bank and cannot adjust your interest rate. Only your credit card company can lower your interest rate.
Any false, deceptive, misleading or fraudulent solicitation making claims to offer special immigration deals or guaranteed high‐paying jobs. Scammers can easily create fake websites which will claim to be official government sites or partners, and offer immigration opportunities.
Lower Energy / Hydro Bills
Any false, deceptive, misleading or fraudulent offer to lower your energy bill.
Air Duct Cleaners / Home Repairs
Consumers receive a call from a telemarketer, offering services at low prices. Services can include air duct cleaning and furnace/boiler repairs or assessment. Although services are often completed, they are of low quality, offer invaluable warranties and cause potential risks.
Warning Signs – How to Protect Yourself
- Never give anyone remote access to your computer. If you are having problems with your operating system, bring it to a local technician.
- Beware of scammers advising you of an unauthorized charge on your credit card account and requesting your credit card number.
- Verify any calls with your credit card company by calling the phone number on the back of your credit card.
- Never provide personal information or banking details over the telephone unless you initiated the call.
- Beware of solicitations for products or services offering lower energy bills.
- Do your homework before hiring a company.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and if you feel pressured, never hesitate to hang up.
If you think you or someone you know has been a victim of fraud, please contact the Canadian Anti‐Fraud Centre at 1‐888‐495‐8501 or report online at http://www.antifraudcentre.ca .
This document is the property of the CAFC. It is loaned to your agency/department in confidence and it is not to be reclassified, copied, reproduced, used or further disseminated, in whole or part, without the consent of the originator. It is not to be used in affidavits, court proceedings or subpoenas or for any other legal or judicial purposes. This caveat is an integral part of this document and must accompany any information extracted from it.