Steinbach RCMP would like to warn the public about a pattern of frauds that have occurred recently. The frauds involved unknown suspects contacting victims online through social media.
Police say that suspects either befriend the victims, or claim to be representing their employer. In either case, the suspects create a sense of urgency. This is achieved either by requesting money for an emergency or to process a monetary award that is time sensitive. Suspects then request the victims receive a cheque by mail, cash the cheque, and send the funds to the suspects by cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin. The fraud then continues with the suspects requesting money to solve the emergency or to process the monetary award.
RCMP warn that the public should be wary about who they are interacting with online, especially anyone they do not know who promises money in exchange for their cooperation. Funds, when sent outside Canada or by cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin, are often difficult to recover.
Anyone who suspects they may have fallen victim to a fraud are encouraged to make a police report and to contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.