New scam targets local businesses
Castlegar police are in the beginning stages of investigating a scam that has so far targeted two local businesses.
The perpetrators, according to RCMP Sgt. Laurel Mathew, are singling out companies large enough to have corporate head offices in a community other than Castlegar.
“They call and say they’re (insert made-up name here) from corporate management, and they’re coming to town to swap out the PIN pads (on which customers swipe bank and credit cards to pay for merchandise or services),” Mathew said.
“Luckily, both businesses were smart and called their corporate head offices, and were told it’s a scam,” she said, explaining the technology has advanced such that scammers can switch regular equipment for PIN pads that can download tons of information, from ATM card numers and user codes to credit card numbers.
“There are just milions of things they can attach to steal information they shouldn’t have,” she said.
Should anyone be approached with such a story, they are encouraged to call the RCMP right away at 250-365-7721.
Mathew also reminded residents not to offer payment for any service before said service has been rendered, as now is the season for “outdoor contractors” to ring the doorbell and promise all manner of outdoor work …but some scammers accept payment and are never seen again.