On Wednesday, Feb. 27, Shelburne RCMP responded to multiple fraud complaints.
Investigators have determined they are part of a telephone scam affecting people across Canada. In this particular scam, a male calls and identifies himself as Michael Bell, who goes on to claim he is from Publishers Clearing House and he is calling to say the person has won $2.5 million in sweepstakes.
Bell then advises in order to claim the prize money, the person will have to provide personal information to confirm identity (social insurance number, name, date of birth, address and home phone number). The other option Bell will offer is for the person to wire him a sum of money, usually in the $250 range, to an address in the United States.
Those who have been contacted by the person identifying himself as Michael Bell say he is extremely persistent and will not take no as an answer. People are advised simply to hang up.
The RCMP reminds the public that personal information should never be given out over the phone. If you suspect that something is not quite right, hang up immediately and either contact your local police department or the Canadian Anti Fraud Centre at either 1-888-495-8501 or firstname.lastname@example.org.