Brandon police are warning Facebook users to look out for a con artist calling himself “Agent Dave.”
Police say they have received two complaints in two days of a fraud scheme involving the social media site.
The victims are contacted through Facebook by a contact and are advised they have won a prize. The contact person represents himself as an agent — possibly from an insurance company — and provides a phone number of 435-465-1463 and an e-mail address of firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Agent Dave” then asks for personal information to be sent to the phone number via text message. The information required to collect the winnings includes: name, home address, email, age, date of birth, marital status, next of kin, annual income, and career.
Once this information is sent, “Agent Dave” then sends a ticket number as reference and advises the victim has to pay $1,000 to claim the winnings.
For more information on this and other frauds, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at: antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/english/home-eng.html
Police remind the public to safeguard themselves from fraud with these tips:
• Never send money up front on the promise of a prize, lottery or sweepstake.
• Scammers are notorious for requesting money to be sent by a money service provider such as MoneyGram or Western Union. Don’t do it. It’s like sending cash — once it’s gone, you can’t get it back.
• Never accept a friend request, engage in a chat or respond to a message from an unknown person.
• Protect your profile. Change all privacy setting to “Friends.” This will allow only people you know and trust to search and access your profile page.
• Should you receive a suspicious message from a family member or friend, confirm the solicitation through an outside source not associated to Facebook, such as a telephone call, text message or email.
• Report any suspicious messages to Facebook Security at facebook.com/report
» Brandon Sun