‘Clever’ 90-year-old Saanich resident evades vitamin phone scammer

Police warn of phone scammers claiming to be from the Regional Health Authority

A 90-year-old Saanich resident caught on quickly when a scammer tried selling her vitamins over the phone.

On Jan. 22, the woman received a call from someone who claimed to be from the Regional Health Authority tasked with talking to seniors in the community about the benefits of vitamins. The caller tried to sell her some “natural vitamin B products.”

READ ALSO: Victoria man charged after dog killed

Saanich police say the woman was “savvy” and quickly realized the call was likely a scam. She asked, “aren’t all vitamins natural?” and the scammer hung up.

The woman reported the scam to the police and described the caller as a man with a strong accent. He’d called from a number with a 289 extension which police traced to Hamilton, Ont. Police tried to call back, but the number was out of service. When they searched it online, the number had been connected to similar scams where the caller would claim to be from the Regional Health Authority.

Island Health confirmed to police that their staff do not solicit people over the phone and have asked that anyone who receives these calls report them to police.

READ ALSO: WHO says China virus not global health emergency

Saanich police emphasized that the woman was “clever” and didn’t provide the caller with her personal information. In an effort to avoid having other residents fall victim to the scam, she hoped police could warn others.

Any unsuccessful frauds or scams – where no personal information was given and no money was lost – can be reported to the Canadian Anti-fraud Centre by calling 1-888-495-8501.

Visit the Government of Canada’s website for more information on avoiding scams.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

fraud preventionSaanichScams

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sooke stands up against bullying on Pink Shirt Day

This year’s theme, “Lift Each Other Up” reflects the origins of Pink Shirt Day

Fiddler on the Roof brings timely message to Oak Bay stage

Musical starts Friday in Dave Dunnet Theatre

Life complicated when water not secure

Water issues have real-life impacts in Sooke Region

UPDATED: Pat Bay Highway blockade ends three hours later

About 80 people from four major Peninsula First Nations blocking major highway

Work begins on Otter Point Road project in Sooke

The project now has a fall completion date following a long delay

VIDEO: Province promotes ‘lifting each other up’ on 13th annual Pink Shirt Day in Victoria

Students, MLAs, community members gathered at B.C. Parliament Buildings Wednesday

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

About 81,000 people around the world have now become ill with COVID-19

B.C. residents in Wet’suwet’en territory have right to police presence: Public Safety Minister

Nevertheless, Bill Blair said officials remain ‘very anxious’ for the barricades to come down

Winnipeg police investigating graffiti on RCMP and other buildings

Manitoba Justice Minister Cliff Cullen denounced the vandalism

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

Trucking company fined $175K for Kootenay creek fuel spill

Decision handed down last Friday in Nelson court

B.C. Liberals call for ban on foreign funds to pipeline protesters

Sierra Club, Wilderness Committee back Coastal GasLink blockades

Donations pour in for family who lost father, son in fatal crash on B.C. highway

Mike Cochlin and sons Liam and Quinn were travelling on Highway 5A

Vancouver Island RCMP officer assaulted during traffic stop

On Feb. 21, a member of the Comox Valley RCMP was assaulted… Continue reading

Most Read