Police remind citizens to be cautious of holiday scams



Police remind citizens to be cautious of holiday scams

Halifax Regional Police is reminding citizens to be cautious of new and recurring scams as the holiday season gets underway. 

Police have recently received several reports in relation to a scam intended to defraud people of their money. In each incident, a victim receives a call from someone pretending to be a friend or family member who indicates they have been arrested and are in jail. Someone pretending to be a lawyer then informs the victim they need to pay money to have their loved one released from custody.

Police remind people to be suspicious of any emails or calls asking for money and to make sure the caller is legitimate before sending any money. You should also not give personal information to anyone, whether solicitation occurs by email, telephone or in person, unless you have initiated the contact or you are certain of the identification of the individual and the legitimacy of the organization they claim to represent. A reminder that police and government organizations will not go to your door to request money.

Additionally, police are also reminding online shoppers that exercising a little caution can pay off in the long run when it comes to avoiding online marketplace scams.

  • Browse the site for information on its policies, tips for safe transactions and reporting suspicious/fraudulent activity.
  • Be cautious of anyone who asks for payment in advance of being able to verify that the item exists and that the seller is the legitimate owner.
  • Do not give out personal or banking information over the phone, text message, email or the internet.
  • When buying or selling, meet in person to see the product and exchange funds.
  • Meet in well-lit and populated public places, like a coffee shop or grocery store parking lot during business hours.
  • Agree to meet in a place that you are comfortable with; don’t be forced to accept a last-minute change in location.
  • Tell a friend or family member where you are going and when you will be back or take them along with you.
  • If you own a cell phone, take it with you.

Call police at 902-490-5016 if you've lost money or your identity has been compromised as the result of a scam. You can report a scam where you haven’t been a victim to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, or through the RCMP’s online reporting system or call 1.888.495.8501.

More information and scam prevention tips are available at:

 22-144458/ 22-144416/ 22-144104/ 22-144496