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Salmon Arm resident sends scammer $10K from bitcoin ATM, Mounties say

$10K lost to bitcoin scam

Salmon Arm police are reminding residents to be cautious after a local woman reportedly sent $10,000 in bitcoin to a scammer who was claiming to be a fraud investigator.

Salmon Arm RCMP Const. Andrew Hodges said the incident took place on Feb. 22.

“A woman reported that she received a phone call at 6 a.m. from a man claiming to be a fraud investigator,” Hodges said.

“The man told the victim that her payment for the purchase of a $700 cell phone did not go through, and provided directions on how to pay. The victim followed the man’s directions that resulted in her sending the fraudster $10,000 in bitcoin, via a bitcoin ATM.”

The victim reported the caller had a thick accent, and police said calls to that phone number went unanswered.

Police reminded residents to be extremely cautious of phone calls from unknown people requesting money.

“If you receive a phone call from anyone claiming you owe them money, police recommend hanging up immediately,” Hodges said. “If you want to check if you owe money, call the business directly by calling a phone number obtained from a safe source such as the official business website, or a phone book.”

Residents are encouraged to visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website to learn more about protecting themselves from fraud.

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