Alert employees prevent elderly female from losing thousands to scam

Nanaimo, BC – On Thursday March 8th an elderly female walked into a local Shoppers Drug Mart asking to purchase $4000 in gaming cards. Instantly, given the amount asked for, the employee sensed the female was being duped and proceeded to ask her why she needed so many cards.

The female, who was in her eighties, told the employee that she had just received a phone call from her son who told her he was in financial trouble and the only way out of his mess was for her to buy $4000 dollars in gaming cards, called “Steam Cards”. After purchasing them she was directed to send them to her son’s lawyer’s office in the Lower Mainland. The female told the employee she had spoken with her son’s lawyer and then an RCMP officer who repeated the same story.

The Shoppers Drug Mart employee politely told her it was all a scam to which the female responded she knew of the ITunes scam but this was real. Over the next few minutes at least four different employees attempted to convince her but to no avail. Eventually the woman told them if they would not sell her the cards, she would purchase them at Walmart.

The Shoppers Drug Mart employees realized they needed to act fast so they reported the incident to the police, indicating the female would be driving to Walmart. The dispatch operator astutely called Walmart to alert them and sure enough, the female soon arrived and was again prevented from making the purchase.

The dispatch centre, and an officer with the Nanaimo RCMP followed up with the female her by phone and only then did she realize it was a scam.

“These types of scams tug at your heartstrings which is why they are so effective,” said Constable Gary O’Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP.

To learn more about frauds and scams go to the Canadian Anti Fraud centre at http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/index-eng.htm

File # 2018-8046

Nanaimo RCMP


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