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Oak Bay resident loses $12,800 after clicking ‘millionaire that died’ link

Bike thefts, break and enters among other calls for police last week
A black Devide Spartan Mountain bike with gold colouring valued over $5,000 was reported stolen on July 9. (Courtesy Oak Bay Police Department)

An Oak Bay resident is out thousands of dollars after clicking a phishing link last week.

Oak Bay police were called July 5 after the resident reported they had clicked a link titled “millionaire that died” and a second link appeared. The second claimed to be from Microsoft and warned the computer had been hacked and their information compromised, Oak Bay police said in a news release.

The resident called a phone number provided and spoke with someone they believed was from the CIBC fraud department. The scammer convinced them to go to the bank and withdraw $12,800 cash and deposit it into three separate Bitcoin ATMs.

Becoming suspicious, the resident followed up with the bank, learned they had been defrauded and called police.

This fraudster, like most, was prepared with high-pressure tactics and had a rehearsed and believable script, police said.

READ ALSO: Oak Bay police hunt thief who took family’s cargo e-bike valued at $10K

This year more than 12,000 reported victims of fraud have lost $133.7 million as of March 31, according to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

Oak Bay Police Department reminds residents to stop, take a breath, hang up and contact their financial agency or the police if an intersection feels wrong. Reputable and legitimate financial institutions will not ask for multiple cash withdrawals and deposits.

The scam was among 67 calls for service to Oak Bay police the week of July 4 to 9.

One-day turnaround

An Oak Bay resident discovered $1,700 worth of stuff stolen from their garage and had it returned the same day.

Police were called July 7, after a resident in 2000-block of Crescent Road discovered clothing, trading cards and other items that had been stored in moving boxes and garbage bags were gone. The same day, Victoria police recovered much of the stolen property, and it was returned to the resident.

Stolen bike tracked to Victoria

A hidden GPS tracker led a resident right to their stolen electric cargo bike on July 7.

The resident tracked the bike, stolen from south Oak Bay, to a location in Victoria. VicPD responded to the location of the tracking device after a resident there reported a suspicious man had been on their property. The man was confronted by the homeowner and ran off leaving behind the stolen bicycle, sports equipment, tools, and musical instruments. The property was recovered and returned to owners.

READ ALSO: Baby seal plucked from Oak Bay beach now beefing up at rescue centre

Afternoon B&E

A resident is out computers and cash after a break and enter in the 2100-block of Lorne Terrace.

Oak Bay police were called July 7 at 6:30 p.m. after someone entered a home through the unlocked front door sometime between 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. Two laptops, a bank card and about $50 in cash were reported stolen. Two unauthorized purchases of under $50 were later made using the stolen bank card.

Bike lock cut

A cyclist is out a $5,000 bike after it was stolen from the 2100-block of Oak Bay Avenue on July 9.

The owner told police they had locked their bicycle at to the bike rack at 10 a.m. and ran several errands returning 90 minutes later when they found the lock cut and the bicycle gone. The stolen bicycle is described as a black Devide Spartan Mountain bike with gold colouring valued at over $5,000.

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Christine van Reeuwyk

About the Author: Christine van Reeuwyk

Longtime journalist with the Greater Victoria news team.
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