FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – On June 3, 2019, the Fort St. John RCMP received a report of an e-transfer scam that was confirmed by the complainant’s bank.
According to the RCMP, typical to many online classified scams, a supposed buyer agrees to purchase an item and agrees to pay via e-transfer of funds. The seller receives an email that appears to be a legitimate e-transfer email stating “Transfer On Hold… Until (Shipment Tracking Number Is Provided) and indicates the shipping method to be Canada Post.
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Usually what happens is the seller, goes to Canada Post, ships the item in order to obtain a tracking number and then responds to the email with the tracking number in order to receive the e-transfer of funds owed to them.
The package is now in the mail but what happens is the e-transfer does not go through and the buyer and seller communicate back and forth while the package makes its way to the buyer and the seller inevitably does not receive their money.
In this case, the complainant became suspicious and spoke with their bank that confirmed that if anyone receives an e-transfer request that requires a tracking or shipping number prior to receiving payment, it is fraudulent.
“It is imperative that the public knows about this twist on the online fraud scams”, said Cst Riley King. “We want to help educate and protect the hard working honest public from becoming victims in cases like this.”
Canada Post takes the security of the mail very seriously and works with law enforcement partners to disrupt and investigate. Customers are encouraged to report the incidents to local police, Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (1-888-495-8501) and Canada Post (1-800-267-1177).
The Fort St John RCMP continue to investigate and are asking anyone who has information about these types of incidents, or any other crimes to please contact the Fort St John RCMP at 250-787-8100. Should you wish to remain anonymous, please call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or submit a tip online at www.crimestoppersnebc.ca.