Niagara Falls couple caught in scam, buying $22,000 in gift cards

By Don Redmond

Published on May 19, 2022 at 4:36 p.m.

Niagara Police are reporting that an elderly Niagara Falls couple got caught up in a gift card scam and ended up buying some for $22,000.

The police’s Central Fraud Unit discovered on May 12 that the suspects had made contact with the victims through a “pop-up window” on their computers.

The scammers then contacted the victims by phone where they were led to believe they were contacting their bank.

The victims were prompted to make payments using gift cards, with the scammers sending them to a Burlington store to purchase gift cards.

The victims went to buy $16,000 worth of gift cards. Then they were directed to another store in Burlington where they purchased an additional $1,000 in gift cards.

The next day (May 13), the scammers sent them to a pharmacy in Niagara Falls where they purchased $5,000 worth of gift cards. All gift card numbers have been provided to scammers.

Police don’t have much information on the suspects except that they were male and one appeared to be “in his 50s with an accent.”

The Fraud Squad offers the following tips:

• Never confirm personal information over the phone.

• Always check who is calling.

• Don’t be pressured. Stop. Take the time to process what you have been told, to see if it makes sense.

• Ask a trusted friend or family member for their opinion.

• If in doubt, call your local police department.

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