Police are warning the public of an emerging trend of fraud involving WhatsApp.
According to an emailed statement from the Surrey RCMP, two separate reports from fraud victims were filed over the past few weeks.
The victims had their credit card data stolen and used after sharing private information on WhatsApp. In both cases, they believed that they were booking low-cost airline tickets.
The statement continues to say that both victims were responding to ads that were seen on Punjabi television and newspapers. The ads reportedly offered low-cost flights between India and Vancouver and directed victims to “share their personal and credit card details required to make the flight on Whatsapp.”
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“These incidents are actively being investigated and police are currently looking to identify the individuals involved,” says Corporal Dan Klassen of the Surrey RCMP. “This is a new trend of note and we are bringing the details to light so that the public is aware of the scam and can take steps to protect themselves.”
In order to avoid becoming a victim of this scam, police are reminding people to never provide personal or credit card details through unknown mobile apps or third-party agents.
RCMP also say to always book airline tickets through secure booking websites or licensed travel agents, and to constantly check credit card statements for potentially fraudulent charges.
Anyone with information regarding these incidents is asked to contact the Surrey RCMP at 604-599-0502 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.