A local woman is warning Canadians about a phone scam that has afflicted Canadians for years.
Hedda Lersey received three phone calls last week from an international number claiming to be the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) using scare tactics to steal money.
“It’s just disgusting, but people need to be warned,” Lersey said. “Their blatant arrogance was just horrible.”
The unknown callers threatened Lersey with jail time unless she paid the amount they claimed she owed.
Lersey asked one of the callers why they were scamming Canadians.
“He said, ‘You have your way of making money and we have ours. We have lots of people falling for this scam,’” Lersey said. “They’re laughing over there because we basically can’t do anything.”
According to the CRA website, taxpayers should be vigilant when receiving a fraudulent message from an organization claiming to be the CRA. Scams sometimes insist that personal information is needed to receive a refund or a benefit payment. Cases of fraud could also use threatening or coercive language to scare individuals into paying fictitious debt to the CRA.
Other communications urge taxpayers to visit a fake CRA website where the taxpayer is then asked to verify their identity by entering personal information. These are scams and taxpayers should never respond to these fraudulent communications or click on any of the links provided, the website states.
For more information on protection against fraud, visit www.cra-arc.gc.ca.