A funny thing happens to some people sometimes. Even the most sensible person can sometimes
get fooled into thinking that what is too good to be true… just MIGHT
be true. And all their logic and judgement fly away…
like birds going south for the winter. The classic example is the scam in which you
are “personally” asked by the King of a deep dark mysterious country (or maybe
his brother) to move a few million dollars into your account…
– and told to keep a hefty chunk for your troubles AFTER you pay some taxes and banking
fees. Uh… no. The money will never come… and
the scammer profits from those “taxes and charges” you paid him.
In an inheritance scam, the clever crook tells you that a long-lost relative has left you
a huge inheritance, and if you’d ever so kindly share your intimate
personal details and bank account info… the money will be right along.
Uh… no again. Your dead Uncle Waldo may not even exist… and your identity and maybe
your money - have been stolen. Business people should watch out for Overpayment
scams, which work on the same basic principle. A crook pays way too much for an item you’re
selling by mail or on line, then swears the overpayment was an oversight,
and asks you to refund the difference. But when you do the refund before their original
cheque has cleared, you will find that it was all a lie…
their original cheque bounces, and your money is gone.
We can never say it enough: If it sounds too good to be true… don’t you think it probably
is? Do your research. Use your judgement.
And check the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre for information on how to protect yourself.
A message from the Competition Bureau of Canada… and the Little Black Book of Scams.