There is a new scam spreading throughout Canada. This morning a MetroActive member received a call at 7:15 a.m. with an automated voice saying there is an unauthorized charge on his CIBC Visa. It was in fact a fraud attempt and here is how the call went and what he did to discover the fraud.
The automated voice stated they were calling from the CIBC Visa department and that there has been an unauthorized charge on his Visa. Then the voice said to press ‘1’ in order to transfer to a representative.
After a short period on hold an attendant with a South-Asian (Indian accent) answered with “Visa fraud department, how may I help you?”. Our member replied with “You just called me about a fraud on my Visa account”. The voice then continued to talk about an attempted fraud account on his CIBC Visa.
Being suspicious from the beginning, since the call had come in so early in the morning with a long-distance origin ring, he was cautious. He then decided to test the attendant by asking which Visa. The tenant replied ‘Your CIBC Visa’. Our member then asked, what are the 4 last digits of the Visa card. That is when the attendant hung up.
CIBC Hacked or Internal Information Breach?
It is concerning that the caller in this scam would have known that our member had a CIBC Visa Card. Since it is an emergency reserve card, which he doesn’t usually use, it is unlikely that a vendor would have given the scammers the heads up. It is possible that the scammers where just phishing (guessing) that he had a CIBC Visa card. But, why not some other bank Visa or credit card brand? We’re concerned that someone at CIBC or one of its offshore suppliers may have released customer list information to scammers.
Scammers Targeting Canadians
This is yet another scam targeting Canadians in an attempt to steal their identity or money. The fact that the number and magnitude of these scams in increasing is a sign that they are profitable activities for the thieves. Yet, law enforcement agencies in Canada have not been able (or are not trying to) find these criminals and end these attacks on Canadians.
Since there is no accountability, you can expect these scams to get more sophisticated and brazen. With time, more and more Canadians will fall victim to these scammers. The only solution is for the Canadian government to go after the people behind the scams.
Meanwhile, Canadians can avoid being scammed by knowing the signs and having a plan on how to deal with these calls.
3 Keys To Deal With Potential Scam Calls
1. Consider every incoming phone call from an unknown person to be a potential fraud
- Ask why they’re calling you?
- Ask who is calling you? Are you sure they are who they say they are?
3. Never give any information about your identity or account
- Protect your identity and never reveal information about your name, address, account number or anything else unless the bank already has it and is asking to confirm. Even then only confirm if you are a client of that bank.
- A Canadian financial institution will not ask you for your account number as they will have that information about you already, especially if they’re calling you about a specific issue
- A Canadian financial institution will not ask you to reveal a password over the phone
- A Canadian financial institution will never ask you to make payment over the telephone
4. Look for indicators that something is not write
- Is the call during regular business hours?
- Is the call from a long-distance origin?
- Is the call from an automated message with robotic-like voice?
- Do they have a foreign accent (especially South-Asian)?
- They are not willing to give you a telephone number you can reach them at
- The contact number they give you doesn’t match the one that is registered to the company
5. Ask questions that require the scammer to know information that only your bank would know
- What are the last four digits of my account number?
- What email address do you have on record for me?
- What was the last payment I made to my account?
- How do I usually make payments to my account?
At any point during any of this, if you find something doesn’t make sense, just hang up.
Related Articles: Company Representative Scam Warning
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