RCMP say Nova Scotians lost $3.6m last year in scams

An RCMP cruiser at headquarters in Dartmouth. (Healey photo)

DARTMOUTH: Residents in N.S. lost a record $3.6 million to scammers, up near $1.1 m from 2021, Noav Scotia RCMP say.

“Fraudsters continue to steal heard-earned money from people in every corner of our province,” said Sgt. Andrew Joyce of the RCMP Financial Crime unit.

“False investment opportunities, fake relationships, and bogus prize winnings are costing Nova Scotians thousands.”

Based on dollar losses, the top ten scams in the province in 2022 were:

  • Investments – $1,823,133.29
  • Romance – $616,051.58
  • Prize – $318,187.51
  • Spear phishing – $276,512.30
  • Vendor fraud – $164,807.19
  • Job – $134,132.13
  • Service – $118,342.45
  • Extortion – $104,128.00
  • Merchandise – $67,547.96
  • Emergency (jail, accident, hospital, help) – $60,616.00

“With March being Fraud Prevention Month, we’re taking this opportunity to remind Nova Scotians to be alert to scam activity,” said Sgt. Joyce. “It’s rampant. And it can be devastatingly costly.”

To lessen the chances of being a victim of fraud:

  • Don’t give personal or financial information to unknown callers, texters or emailers
  • Resist acting immediately when being pressured to hand money over
  • Never send cryptocurrency or gift cards for payment
  • Know that government agencies and police don’t request payment via gift cards or cryptocurrency, and don’t show up at your door to collect money

If anyone suspects they’re a victim of fraud, they should contact their nearest RCMP detachment or local police.