Chatham Kent Police Caution Public Against Online Transaction Fraud

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The Chatham Kent Police Department has issued a vigilant warning to safeguard the community from a recent surge in online transaction fraud. The alert comes after an incident reported on August 4, 2023, involving a deceitful scheme preying on unsuspecting sellers.

The incident revolved around the attempted sale of two hunting bows via an online platform, where a seller had listed the items for $ 1,000. A purported buyer reached out, agreeing to the price and indicating their intention to make payment through a certified cheque. Falling victim to a classic con, the seller disclosed their personal information as requested by the buyer.

In the subsequent turn of events, the seller received a package via FedEx containing a cheque amounting to $ 3,000, seemingly issued by a reputable financial institution. However, upon scrutiny, law enforcement officials confirmed the cheque’s counterfeit nature.

This incident mirrors a typical scam strategy in which fraudsters exploit overpayments via falsified cheques, aiming to manipulate the recipient into reimbursing the surplus funds alongside the purchased item. Fortunately, the seller, in this case, did not encounter any monetary or property losses.

In light of this fraudulent trend, the Chatham Kent Police impart valuable guidelines to shield individuals against such deceptive activities:

Exercise Prudence with Overpayments: Vigilance is vital when a buyer proposes payment surpassing the agreed-upon sum and insists on a refund of the surplus funds. Always authenticate payment legitimacy before proceeding.

Rely on Instincts: If a transaction appears remarkably favourable, skepticism is warranted. Engage in comprehensive research and employ caution before embarking on online exchanges.

Opt for Secure Payment Platforms: Leverage trustworthy and secure online payment services equipped to safeguard both buyers and sellers. These platforms offer an extra layer of protection.

Limit Personal Information Sharing: Curtail the release of unnecessary personal details to unfamiliar individuals. Minimize identity theft and fraud jeopardy by disclosing only essential particulars during virtual transactions.

Report Dubious Activity: Swiftly notify your local police department upon encountering suspicious or fraudulent transactions. Furnish pertinent details to aid in thwarting comparable scams and shielding potential victims.

With this alert, the Chatham Kent Police underscore the significance of awareness to counteract the rise of online transaction fraud. By adhering to these preventive measures, residents can proactively avert falling prey to such nefarious schemes.

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