The Vernon North Okanagan RCMP are urging residents to be vigilant online after receiving a number of reports of social media scams Friday, Nov. 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

The Vernon North Okanagan RCMP are urging residents to be vigilant online after receiving a number of reports of social media scams Friday, Nov. 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Social media scams prompt warning from North Okanagan RCMP

Vernon police offer tips to guard against fraudsters after Instagram ploy leads to losses

Reports of various social media scams are being received by the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP, who are in turn reminding residents to stay vigilant and take steps to protect themselves.

One recent scam reported to the police involved a fraudster who contacted a victim through a fake Instagram account and presented them with a “lucrative investment opportunity,” said RCMP media relations officer Const. Chris Terleski.

By the time the victim realized it was a scam, the fraudster had already convinced them to send money and release personal information and had locked their accounts.

“Social media may be a common way to connect with friends and families, but keep in mind that fraudsters will also use these platforms to cheat people out of money and personal information,” Terleski said. “Awareness and education are key; being able to recognize and reject these types of scams before they happen is the single most effective way to put an end to fraud in our community.”

The Vernon RCMP offered the following tips to help guard against social media scams:

• Thoroughly vet all friend requests on social media;

• Only accept friend requests from people you know and can trust;

• Routinely review your social media account privacy and security settings to ensure your personal information is protected;

• Never provide private or personal information on social media

For more information about this and other types of scams, visit the Canadian Centre for Cyber Security’s website.

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Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
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