Police warn public of the latest ID theft scam. Do you think the Chief of Police or the RCMP are going to actually call you?

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON.  – July 25, 2013.  The Halton Regional Police would like to caution the public that scammers are using the names of the RCMP, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) in a computer scam.

Individuals report a frozen computer, or they have been locked-out of their computers, after receiving pop-up messages warning that the computer has been associated with pornography.

These warning messages claim to be from one of these agencies, and tell the recipient to pay a “fine” so the computer can be “unlocked.”  The message also claims that if the “fine” is not paid within 72 hours, criminal proceedings will commence against the user.

“These types of messages, commonly known as “scareware”, are designed to create such shock and anxiety that victims respond by sending money quickly,” states the RCMP in a news release.

The public is advised that if you receive one of these messages please be aware that it is a scam and has not been issued by the CACP, CSIS or the RCMP.

Do not pay the $100.00 “fine”. Being “locked out” of your computer is an indication that your system may have been infected with malware and you will need to take steps to address that problem.

 The police pass along some tips to help keep your computer protected:

  Never click on a pop-up that claims your computer has a virus;

 • Update your anti-virus software often and scan your computer for viruses regularly;

 • Do not click on links or attachments in e-mails sent to you by someone you don’t know;

 • Turn on your browser’s pop-up blocking feature;

 • Never download anti-virus software from a pop-up link sent to you in an e-mail.

 If you have received a “scareware” message please report it to your local police office and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (1-888-495-8501).

 One might ask why someone would be worried about being told there was pornography on their computer if they never visited one of those websites.  Of course, if a person has visited such a site – perhaps there is reason to be afraid.

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