Tax season means an escalation in Guelph residents receiving telephone calls and/or emails that claim to be from Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
These are scams that could result in identity thefts or financial loss.
The telephones scams involve threatening and scaring individuals into paying a fictitious debt to the CRA by saying the person is embezzling money and have not filed yearly taxes in years. These calls should be ignored.
The Emails may also contain embedded malware, or malicious software, that can harm your computer and put your personal information at risk of compromise.
The CRA does not email Canadians and request personal information.
The email may state “that your income statement for this year is not complete and that your statement registration is not complete because you missed two lines”.
The email has a link that purports to be from the Canada Revenue Agency website.
The link takes you to a form requesting personal information (such as your name, date of birth, mother’s maiden name, Social Insurance Number and your personal banking) be submitted electronically (via online submission).
These are not from the CRA. If the CRA does contact you by telephone, there are established processes in place to ensure your personal information is protected.
Should you wish to verify the authenticity of a CRA telephone number, contact the CRA directly by using their numbers for business related calls, contact 1-800-959-5525 and for individual concerns contact 1-800-959-8281.
Check the CRA’s website for details on this and other scams in which the CRA is fraudulently used in an attempt to get personal information.
Anyone who receives a suspicious communication should immediately report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre or to the institution that it appears to be from.
For information on scams, to report deceptive telemarketing, and if personal or financial information has been unwittingly provided, go to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre Web page.