Canada Alerts Consumers About Gangs Indulging in Credit Card Fraud

Anti-Fraud authorities in Canada have warned credit card holders about a new phishing scam that tries to extract card information from owners through an early-hour phone call.

According to Daniel Williams, a senior official at the anti-fraud centre, the scam begins with a phone call between 5 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. The caller will try to identify as someone from the victim’s bank and say that a credit card was used last evening without due authorisation.

This is the latest twist in credit card phishing scams that have been rampant in Canada. Fraudsters know that early in the morning, people will be sleepy and vulnerable, according to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

Early Morning Call

Because of the early hour drowsiness, the victims often volunteer information, reports CBC News. The consumer is likely to share the details such as the bank he is banking with. Then the caller will read out the first few digits of the credit card which is standard for that bank. This will be followed by the scammers asking the victim to spell out the next eight digits to confirm their identity.

Once the scammers have accessed the complete card number, they will use the information to make purchases on that account. Williams said the number of phishing cases is going up and duped victims should immediately contact the police.

Safety Tips

Meanwhile, anti-fraud experts also advised consumers to escape the stress and financial heartache by adopting some new habits while doing away with some old ones. Another report in CBC News gives out some safety tips in this regard.

It says it never hurts to give a heads-up to a credit bureau even if no fraud has happened. A proactive fraud alert on an account for a measly $5 through TransUnion or Equifax will ensure that anyone attempting to apply for credit in that person’s name would lead to an alert asking the lender to call the applicant directly.

“If you haven’t been a victim but you’re still scared of all these breaches, you can still get that extra layer of security,” advised Kelley Keehn, author of “Protecting You and Your Money,” an identity-theft and fraud safety guide, published by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada.

The second tip is to keep updated on the credit score. It suggests taking out time to go into details, in case any discrepancy is doubted. Also a call must be made to the 1-800 number inscribed on the back of the debit card to speak with identity-theft assistance services.