Cobourg Police – Cobourg Resident Defrauded for Over $700,000

In Editor Choice, Police Blotter

Cobourg Police Service reminds residents to protect themselves against fraud after two recent investment scams resulted in over $750,000 in losses for two Cobourg residents.

In one recently reported online scam, a resident was defrauded $50,000 after viewing a video promising high returns with a short turnaround time. The video utilized artificial intelligence (AI) to make it appear that Elon Musk endorsed the investment and encouraged viewers to contact a provided phone number. A fraudster contacted the victim and claimed to be from an investment company, offering guidance through the investment process and convincing the victim to download an app (called “Anydesk”) that provided the scammer with remote access to the victim’s computer. Funds intended to be for the investment were transferred and lost.

In a second recently reported scam, a resident reported that they made wire transfers totalling over $702,000 to an international investment service provider intended to purchase gold and invest in Bitcoin. All communication with the company occurred through a messaging app called “Weechat.” When the victim attempted to withdraw funds, they were unable to.

Members of the public are advised to be cautious when it comes to online investment scams. Stop and take the time to do additional research, talk to trusted individuals and follow safety tips to help prevent becoming a victim of investment fraud:

• Do not engage in unsolicited investment opportunities seen online.

• Never provide personal information online to unknown persons or companies.

• Be cautious of investments promising higher than expected rates of return. If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

• Do not download unknown programs on your computer or allow unknown persons to access your computer.

• Ensure you are investing with a legitimate investment company. Conduct internet searches for the company and make a follow-up phone call to the company, as some fraudsters will use the name of a legitimate company.

If you have been a victim of an investment scam and suffered a financial loss, please report the incident to the police. If you were contacted about this type of scam but did not experience a financial loss, report it to the police and contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or visit www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca. Please visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website for a list of known scams and learn more about how to protect yourself.

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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