Strathcona County Crime Watch Association -

                                "The Eyes and Ears of Your Community"

March is Fraud Prevention Month

As March is Fraud Prevention Month across Canada, Strathcona County RCMP is offering the following information about frauds and scams. Whether being contacted in person, over the telephone, answering advertisements in the various newspapers or online, victims are in some cases, being defrauded of their hard earned money. The following is information gathered from the Government of Canada – Competition Bureau regarding identified frauds.

Money Transfer Requests These types of scams are on the rise and have been started all over the world. Often referred to as advance fee fraud. You receive an email or letter from a scammer asking your help to transfer a large amount of money overseas. You are then offered a share of the money if you agree to give them your bank account details to help with the transfer. They will then ask you to pay taxes and fees prior to receiving your share. You will never be sent any of the money and you will lose the fees you paid. This also may include an individual wanting to purchase an item you’re selling. The fraudulent cheque or money order is sent to you for an amount more that what the item costs.  You’re then requested to send the remaining difference back by money order or cash, which cannot be traced. You later learn from the bank that the cheque or money order is fraudulent. As a result, you, the victim is responsible for the amount received from the individual as well as the money sent back to him/her.

  • Never send money, or give credit card or online account details to anyone you don’t know or trust.

Internet Scams Scammers can use the Internet to promote fraud though unsolicited or junk emails, known as spam. Scammers use a wide range of tricks to get their software onto your computer. They may trick you by clicking on a link or pop-up message in a spam email, or by getting you to visit a fake web-site set up solely to infect people’s computers.

  • Don’t reply to spam emails, even to unsubscribe, and do not click on any links or call any telephone number listed in a spam email. Ensure you have up to date protective software or get advice from a computer specialist.

Emergency Scams An individual contacts you via phone advising that they have been arrested by police and are in need of funds for bail. The individual, posing as a family member, often times a grandchild, provides some details to you, in essence, “proving” that they are who they claim to be. The individual attempts to secure money from you for their release from police custody. There are a number of variations to this telephone scam. In some cases, people have become victims and have been defrauded of thousands of dollars.

  • Don’t give out any personal information to the caller and verify the person’s identity before taking any steps to help.

RCMP offer the following suggestions to avoid becoming a victim of a fraud:

  • Do not give out personal information, over the phone or otherwise unless you are able to confirm who is on the other end;
  • Do not send any money or pay a fee to claim a prize;
  • Be suspicious if this is a “today only” offer.  If it is truly a legitimate deal, it will be there tomorrow;
  • Treat your personal information with care, do not leave it lying around for others to take;
  • Shred old bills, statements, credit cards, etc.;
  • Rely on established businesses or individuals, whose reliability and credibility can be established through a professional organization such as the Better Business Bureau (BBB) or the Chamber of Commerce.

Individuals who do not practice due diligence can be exposed to additional risks and can increase their chances of becoming a victim.  

Police advise that not every salesperson, newspaper advertisement or online business opportunity is fraudulent.  You are simply advised to be aware that some are by arming yourself with knowledge that can help yourself and your family from becoming victims of fraud.

For further information on Frauds or Scams, refer to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at or the Competition Bureau’s Information Centre at

If you have been a victim of fraudulent activity or suspect a business, telemarketer or advertisement is fraudulent, report it to Strathcona County RCMP at 780-467-7741 and to Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1.888.495.8501.

Signs & Decals Available

Strathcona County Crime Watch now has signs and decals available for our members

Decals (static) - 3.5" x 10" or 4" x 4" - FreeGate post signs (plastic) 14" x 10.75" - $3.00 each
Fence post signs (plastic) 5.5" x 24" - $3.00 each

To order, email